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When All Is Said And Done...
With 106 first-unit days of filming completed on November 18, 2010, it was then up to Jerry Bruckheimer, Rob Marshall, John DeLuca and Associate Producer/post-production maestro Pat Sandston to marshal their vast team of film editors, sound- and visual- effects artists, Composer Hans Zimmer and others to complete the film in a pressure- cooker six months before its mid/ late May 2011 openings around the world.

Zimmer had already given Captain Jack and the gallery of "Pirates of the Caribbean” characters their distinctive musical sound in the three previous films, creating full-bodied orchestral scores which managed to walk the tightrope between the stirringly traditional in grand Hollywood tradition and simultaneously innovative, imaginative and adventurous.

"I love writing music and coming up with new themes,” he notes, having already created memorable leitmotifs for the likes of Captain Jack, Barbossa, Will and Elizabeth and Davy Jones in the previous films. "It gets trickier because the style was established very quickly in the first one, and then suddenly you start falling into things and start identifying the new characters in a musical way. Then it just starts rolling again, and you begin getting fresh ideas.”

"You try to treat each film as an autonomous movie,” Zimmer continues, "but at the same time, there's great fun in revisiting old friends, as it were. We now have Penélope Cruz playing Angelica, who's Spanish, so I felt that there could be some Latin influences in the score for ‘On Stranger Tides.' I've been a big fan of Mexican guitarists Rodrigo y Gabriela for years now, and I asked them if they wanted to come and play with us. We've been having a really great time with them being part of the musical world this film gets to inhabit.”

For all of his years as a film music composer, Zimmer, a keen student of world music, has often brilliantly interwoven ethnic sounds into many of his scores, from African ("A World Apart,” "The Power of One,” Disney's "The Lion King,” Jerry Bruckheimer's "Black Hawk Down”) to Asian ("Black Rain,” "The Last Samurai,” "Kung Fu Panda”) and beyond. But as one who started his career as a rock musician in The Buggles, Zimmer has maintained his links to that world. "I always saw ‘Pirates' as rock-and-roll scores,” notes the composer, "because pirates were sort of the rock-and-rollers of the past. Rodrigo y Gabriela are basically flamenco guitarists, but they come from metal music and very much inhabit the rock-and-roll world as well. So it was a perfect fit between us and them.”

"It's very exciting because it's the first official invitation for us to collaborate with a great composer for a film,” says the duo's Gabriela. "That's very different from what we usually do. All of a sudden, we are here, building all this music from scratch. It's very challenging and very inspiring to work on.”

In the end, as Bruckheimer notes, the best memories of shooting "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” are "the relationships with the cast and crew. Johnny is back, Geoffrey and Kevin are back, and now there are new friendships with Rob, John [DeLuca], Penélope, Ian, Sam and Astrid. The fun of it is making new friends and working with them.”

Director Rob Marshall sums up, "It was a grand adventure on-screen and off. Each moment as we were making this film, whether it was in Hawaii or London or wherever we were, I believe everyone felt part of this unique experience.”


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