Dave Strohmaier, who has spent decades restoring all of the great Cinerama films of the 1950s and ’60s, asked me to participate in his documentary about their music. “The Best in the Biz: The Cinerama Travelogue Composers” examines the scoring process and the grand symphonic music written by such greats as Max Steiner (This Is Cinerama), Morton Gould (Cinerama Holiday), the team of David Raksin-Emil Newman-Sol Kaplan-Jerome Moross (Seven Wonders of the World), Dimitri Tiomkin (Search for Paradise) and Alex North (South Seas Adventure). It’s a whole hour, a rarity in DVD extras today, and I am proud to share screen time with my friends, composers William Stromberg and John Morgan, and filmmaker Harrison Engle, talking about these landmark scores.
I was pleased to be asked to host a tribute to this great composer at the Motion Picture Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater. We played clips from four North classics including Spartacus and then screened the entire film of The Misfits (1961). Joining me on stage to talk about this groundbreaking composer and his work in Hollywood were fellow composer Laurence Rosenthal, biographer Sanya Henderson, and the composer’s son Steven North. Here‘s the Academy press release and here is a recap of the evening.