In the magical adventure film Beasts of the Southern Wild, six-year-old Hushpuppy of “the Bathtub” community in Louisiana embarks on a journey to find her lost mother after her father falls ill. Here, director and composer Benh Zeitlin, producer Michael Gottwald and composer Dan Romer discuss the music behind the film.
“[Benh and Dan] have always worked together in that capacity, but Benh’s made film his life, whereas Dan is a music producer by trade,” says Gottwald. “But I think that Benh, having musical experience, when they come together they create something that is the product of both of them.”
The director “has a very good ear for storytelling in film, like the musical storytelling aspect,” says Romer. “For a good two weeks, we were sitting together working 20 hours a day on this score, and it was like nine a.m. to five a.m. every day working. Just the level of artistry that he was outputting just made me want to work that much.”
Explains Zeitlin, “We’ve just known each other for so long. I sort of understand his tendencies and he understands mine. Like everything else in the film, it turns out that what we needed was actually our family.”
Beasts of the Southern Wild is in theaters now, with the score also currently available.