Giacchino in September 2017
|Born||October 10, 1967|
Riverside Township, New Jersey, U.S.
|Genres||Film score, soundtrack|
|Film, television, and video game score composer|
Michael Giacchino (; born October 10, 1967) is an American composer of music for films, television and video games. He has received an Academy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award, and three Grammy Awards.
He is known for his collaborations with J. J. Abrams, Brad Bird, Matt Reeves, Pete Docter, Colin Trevorrow, Jon Watts, Drew Goddard and The Wachowskis. His film scores include Mission: Impossible III, Super 8, Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness. The Incredibles, Incredibles 2, Ratatouille, Up, Cars 2, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Jurassic World, Inside Out, Zootopia, Star Trek Beyond, Doctor Strange, Rogue One, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Coco, War for the Planet of the Apes, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, and Spider-Man: Far From Home. He also composed the score of the video game series Medal of Honor and Call of Duty.
Giacchino was born in Riverside Township, New Jersey. His father's ancestors came from Sicily and his mother's ancestors emigrated from Abruzzo in the center of Italy; he holds dual American and Italian citizenship. Giacchino grew up in Edgewater Park Township, New Jersey. He graduated from Holy Cross High School in Delran Township, New Jersey in 1986.
Giacchino began combining images and music at age 10, when he began creating stop-motion animation with homemade soundtracks in his basement. While in high school, an art teacher who mentored Giacchino recommended to his parents that he attend the School of Visual Arts in New York City. Giacchino describes visiting the school with his parents thus:
I thought, wow, this is fantastic. They actually have colleges like this? Where I can do the things that I am really interested in doing? That was amazing to me. I loved SVA. I loved the kind of freedom that it provided. It was kind of like this great experiment--okay, you're here because you like something. So let's see how much you like it. We're not going to regulate you too much. We're going to see how passionate and driven you are, and how much you want this thing.
Giacchino enrolled at SVA, majoring in film production and minoring in history. During his final year at SVA, his instructor in film publicity announced an unpaid internship was available at Universal Pictures. Giacchino, who was the only one interested, obtained the six-month position, which he filled at night while attending school during the day and working at Macy's to pay his rent. He graduated from SVA in 1990 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, after which he took music classes at the Juilliard School.
When Giacchino's internship ended, Universal hired him, giving him a job upon graduation from college. He later moved to Disney, and when Disney relocated to Los Angeles, Giacchino moved with them, working in publicity, while taking night classes in instrumentation and orchestration at UCLA. His work for Disney had him interacting with the various personnel who worked in films, such as the producers who hired composers, so when a job at Disney Interactive opened for a producer, Giacchino obtained the job, thinking he could hire himself to write music for the games he produced.
Giacchino's composition work for Disney Interactive during the 16-bit era included the Sega Genesis game Gargoyles, the SNES game Maui Mallard in Cold Shadow and the various console versions of The Lion King. However his first major composition was for the DreamWorks video game adaptation of the 1997 movie, The Lost World: Jurassic Park. The video game was one of the first PlayStation- (also on Sega Saturn) console title to be recorded with an original live orchestral score. Giacchino has since continued his relationship with DreamWorks which also included composing the score for the Small Soldiers video game in 1998, providing full orchestral scores for many of their popular videogames. He also worked with Pandemic studios to create the theme for Mercenaries: Playground of Destruction. Giacchino's award-winning compositions covers the first four instalments of the Medal of Honor series, (Medal of Honor, Underground, Allied Assault and Frontline), Heroes: 2, and also the scores for several other World War II-related video games like Secret Weapons Over Normandy, Call of Duty and Call of Duty: Finest Hour. Additionally, Giacchino composed themes for The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer, and co-wrote the theme of Black with composer Chris Tilton. He also composed the score for Alias, which was based on the television series of the same name. In 2008 Giacchino wrote music for Turning Point: Fall of Liberty. In 2007, he returned to the Medal of Honor franchise as he composed the music for Medal of Honor: Airborne.
Giacchino's work on various video games led to his entrance into television.
In 2001, J. J. Abrams, producer of the television series Alias, discovered Giacchino through his video game work and asked him to provide the new show's soundtrack. The soundtrack featured a mix of full orchestral pieces frequently intermingled with upbeat electronic music, a departure from much of his previous work. Giacchino would go on to provide the score for J.J. Abrams's 2004 television series Lost, creating an acclaimed score which employed a unique process of using spare pieces of a plane fuselage for percussion parts. The score for Lost is also notable for a signature thematic motif: a brass fall-off at the end of certain themes. Just like his counterpart Stu Phillips, he worked with the television show creator Abrams on his shows with his music scores while Abrams supplied the show's main themes on certain series such as Alias.
In 2004, Giacchino received his first big feature film commission. Brad Bird, director of Pixar's The Incredibles, asked Giacchino to provide the soundtrack for the film after having heard his work on Alias. The upbeat jazz orchestral sound was a departure in style not only for Giacchino but for Pixar, which had previously relied on Randy and Thomas Newman for all of its films. Director Brad Bird had originally sought out John Barry - perhaps best known for his work on the early James Bond films--but Barry was reportedly unwilling to repeat the styles of his earlier works.
Giacchino was nominated for two Grammy Awards in 2005 for The Incredibles: Best Score Soundtrack Album for Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media and Best Instrumental Composition.
Like his other counterparts Joel McNeely, J. A. C. Redford and Frank DeVol, Giacchino mostly associated with Disney from early in his career up to most recently, ranging from video games such as Mickey Mania and Gargoyles to films such as The Incredibles and eventually collaborated with Walt Disney Imagineering in creating two new soundtracks for the updated versions of Space Mountain at Disneyland, Space Mountain: Mission 2 at Disneyland Paris, and Space Mountain at Hong Kong Disneyland.
Giacchino also composed scores for the 2005 films Sky High and The Family Stone, and the television movie The Muppets' Wizard of Oz. Additionally, he wrote the music for Joseph Barbera's final theatrical Tom and Jerry cartoon The Karate Guard, and scored the Abrams-directed 2006 film Mission: Impossible III. Giacchino's next musical achievement was his Paris-inspired score for the Disney-Pixar film Ratatouille, which includes the theme song "Le Festin", performed by French artist Camille. He received his first Academy Award nomination for this score. He also created the score for Abrams' 2009 Star Trek film.
Giacchino scored the Pixar film Up (and its accompanying animated short Partly Cloudy), for which he collaborated with director Pete Docter. This marked the first time Giacchino worked with a Pixar director other than Brad Bird. This work gained Giacchino his first Academy Award for Best Original Score: the first-ever win for Pixar in that category. Giacchino notes that he won on the same night as his SVA classmate Joel Harlow won for Best Makeup Oscar for Star Trek.
Giacchino has continued his collaboration with J. J. Abrams. For the Abrams-produced monster film Cloverfield, Giacchino wrote an homage to Japanese monster scores in an overture entitled "ROAR!", which played over the credits, and constituted the only original music for the film. He also composed for the pilot of the Abrams-produced American television series Fringe, after which Giacchino gave scoring duties to his assistant Chad Seiter, who scored the first half of season one. The task was then passed on to Chris Tilton, who scored the latter half of season one and all subsequent seasons.
In 2016, Giacchino composed the score for the Marvel film Doctor Strange, as well as the score for the Disney film Zootopia. Giacchino also composed the fanfare for the new Marvel Studios logo, which debuted with Doctor Strange. In September 2016, it was announced that Giacchino had been chosen to replace composer Alexandre Desplat as the composer for the Star Wars anthology film Rogue One after Desplat was unavailable following reshoots. Giacchino then scored another Marvel Studios film, 2017's Spider-Man: Homecoming.
In addition to his long list of soundtracks, in 2005 Giacchino collaborated with Walt Disney Imagineering in creating two new soundtracks for the updated versions of Space Mountain at Disneyland, Space Mountain: Mission 2 at Disneyland Paris, and Space Mountain at Hong Kong Disneyland. Giacchino was also contracted by Sarah Vowell, who played character Violet in The Incredibles, to compose the score to the audio version of her book Assassination Vacation. Michael Giacchino's music can also be heard in "Star Tours: The Adventure Continues" during the "travel log videos" shown in the queue for both the Disneyland and Walt Disney World versions of the attraction.
In 2009, he was asked to conduct the Academy Awards orchestra for the 81st Academy Awards. For this project he rearranged many famous movie themes in different styles, including a 1930s Big Band treatment of Lawrence of Arabia and a bossa nova of Moon River. Giacchino also composed the fanfare for the 100th Anniversary logo for Paramount Pictures.
In 2015, Giacchino played an It's a Small World operator in the film Tomorrowland which he scored. Additionally, the same year, he played First Order Stormtrooper FN-3181 in J. J. Abrams' Star Wars: The Force Awakens. He reprised the role in the 2018 animated film Ralph Breaks the Internet.
Giacchino is noted for using humorous titles filled with puns on his soundtrack albums.Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Jurassic World in particular had many ape- and dinosaur-related double entendres such as "Gorilla Warfare" and "Raptor Your Heart Out". Many of those have references to previous works of his, both in style and naming. Giacchino used themes from the track "U-Boat" from the Medal of Honor soundtrack in the tracks "Sawyer Jones and the Temple of Boom" and "Sub-Primed" from the 5th and 6th season Lost soundtracks as the submarine motif. In terms of naming, the score for The Incredibles contains a piece named "100 Mile Dash", and subsequently Ratatouille had "100 Rat Dash", Up had "Three Dog Dash", and Coco had "Shrine and Dash". Another series of examples: "World's Worst Beach Party" from the first Lost album, "World's Worst Last 4 Minutes To Live" from the Mission: Impossible III soundtrack, "Galaxy's Worst Sushi Bar" from Star Trek (2010 deluxe release), "World's Worst Landscaping" from the second Lost album, "World's Worst Car Wash" from the soundtrack album Lost: The Final Season, and "World's Worst Field Trip" from the soundtrack of Super 8. The soundtrack for Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol also has a track titled "World's Worst Parking Valet", and the score for Zootopia contains a track titled "World's Worst Animal Shelter". Inversely, the score for Mercenaries: Playground of Destruction has a track entitled "World's Best Carpool Lane"; the Speed Racer score has tracks entitled "World's Best Autopia" and "World's Worst Road Rage."
|2008||Ratatouille||Best Original Score||Nominated|||
|2010||Up||Best Original Score||Won|||
|2005||Lost: Pilot||Outstanding Music Composition for a Series||Won|
|2008||Lost: The Constant||Outstanding Music Composition for a Series||Nominated|
|2010||Lost: The End||Outstanding Music Composition for a Series||Nominated|
|2005||The Incredibles||Best Score Soundtrack Album||Nominated|
|2005||"The Incredits" (from The Incredibles)||Best Instrumental Composition||Nominated|
|2008||Ratatouille||Best Score Soundtrack Album||Won|
|2010||Star Trek||Best Score Soundtrack Album||Nominated|
|2010||Up||Best Score Soundtrack Album||Won|
|2010||"Married Life" (from Up)||Best Instrumental Composition||Won|
|2010||"Up With End Credits" (from Up)||Best Instrumental Arrangement||Nominated|
|2019||Coco||Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media||Nominated|
|Mickey Mania: The Timeless Adventures of Mickey Mouse||1994||Additional compositions|
|Maui Mallard in Cold Shadow||1995||N/A|
|The Lost World: Jurassic Park||1997||N/A|
|T'ai Fu: Wrath of the Tiger||1999||N/A|
|Warpath: Jurassic Park||1999||N/A|
|Medal of Honor||1999||N/A|
|Muppet Monster Adventure||2000||N/A|
|Medal of Honor: Underground||2000||N/A|
|Medal of Honor: Allied Assault||2002||N/A|
|Medal of Honor: Frontline||2002||N/A|
|Call of Duty||2003||N/A|
|Secret Weapons Over Normandy||2003||N/A|
|Call of Duty: United Offensive||2004||Expansion pack|
|Call of Duty: Finest Hour||2004||N/A|
|The Incredibles||2004||Console/PC versions only, composed with Chris Tilton|
|Mercenaries: Playground of Destruction||2005||Composed with Chris Tilton|
|The Incredibles: Rise of the Underminer||2005||Composed with Chris Tilton|
|Black||2006||Main theme co-composed with Chris Tilton, original score by Chris Tilton|
|Medal of Honor: Vanguard||2007||N/A|
|Medal of Honor: Airborne||2007||N/A|
|Medal of Honor: Heroes 2||2007||N/A|
|Lost: Via Domus||2008||N/A|
|Turning Point: Fall of Liberty||2008||N/A|
|Fracture||2008||Only producer - Music composed by Chris Tilton and Chad Seiter|
|Up||2009||with Chad Seiter|
|Lego The Incredibles||2018||Composed with Rob Westwood and Ian Livingstone|
|1997||Legal Deceit||Monika Harris||N/A|
|1999||My Brother the Pig||Erik Fleming||N/A|
|2001||The Trouble with Lou||Gregor Joackim||N/A|
|2004||The Incredibles||Brad Bird||Nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack Album|
Nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition
First collaboration with Brad Bird
|2005||Sky High||Mike Mitchell||N/A|
|The Muppets' Wizard of Oz||Kirk Thatcher||TV Movie|
|The Family Stone||Thomas Bezucha||First collaboration with Thomas Bezucha|
|2006||Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World||Albert Brooks||N/A|
|Mission: Impossible III||J.J. Abrams||First film collaboration with J.J. Abrams|
|2007||Ratatouille||Brad Bird||Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack Album|
Nominated for a Academy Award for Best Original Score
Second collaboration with Brad Bird
|2008||Cloverfield||Matt Reeves||Credited as "Written by"|
Only composed "Roar!" for ending credits
First collaboration with Matt Reeves
|Speed Racer||The Wachowskis||First collaboration with The Wachowskis|
|2009||Star Trek||J.J. Abrams||Nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack Album|
Second collaboration with J.J. Abrams
|Up||Pete Docter||Academy Award for Best Original Score|
BAFTA Award for Best Music
Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack Album
Grammy Award for Best Instrumental Composition
Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score - Up
First collaboration with Pete Docter
|Land of the Lost||Brad Silberling||N/A|
|Earth Days||Robert Stone||Documentary Film|
|2010||Let Me In||Matt Reeves||Second collaboration with Matt Reeves|
|2011||Cars 2||John Lasseter||N/A|
|Super 8||J.J. Abrams||Third collaboration with J.J. Abrams|
|Monte Carlo||Thomas Bezucha||Second collaboration with Thomas Bezucha|
|Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol||Brad Bird||Third collaboration with Brad Bird|
|2012||John Carter||Andrew Stanton||N/A|
|2013||Star Trek Into Darkness||J.J. Abrams||Fourth collaboration with J.J. Abrams|
|2014||Dawn of the Planet of the Apes||Matt Reeves||Third collaboration with Matt Reeves|
|This Is Where I Leave You||Shawn Levy||N/A|
|2015||Jupiter Ascending||The Wachowskis||Second collaboration with The Wachowskis|
|Tomorrowland||Brad Bird||Fourth collaboration with Brad Bird|
|Jurassic World||Colin Trevorrow||First collaboration with Colin Trevorrow|
|Inside Out||Pete Docter||Second collaboration with Pete Docter|
|Star Trek Beyond||Justin Lin||N/A|
|Doctor Strange||Scott Derrickson||N/A|
|Rogue One: A Star Wars Story||Gareth Edwards||Replaced Alexandre Desplat|
Original Star Wars themes by John Williams
|2017||The Book of Henry||Colin Trevorrow||Second collaboration with Colin Trevorrow|
|Spider-Man: Homecoming||Jon Watts||First collaboration with Jon Watts|
|War for the Planet of the Apes||Matt Reeves||Fourth collaboration with Matt Reeves|
|2018||Incredibles 2||Brad Bird||Fifth collaboration with Brad Bird|
|Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom||J. A. Bayona||First J. A. Bayona film not to be composed by Fernando Velázquez|
|Bad Times at the El Royale||Drew Goddard||N/A|
|2019||Spider-Man: Far From Home||Jon Watts||Second collaboration with Jon Watts|
|Jojo Rabbit||Taika Waititi||N/A|
|2021||The Batman||Matt Reeves||Fifth collaboration with Matt Reeves|
|No Salida||1998||Short film|
|String Of The Kite||2003||Short film|
|The Karate Guard||2005||Short film|
|One Man Band||2005||Short film|
|Jack-Jack Attack||2005||Short film|
|How to Hook Up Your Home Theater||2007||Short film|
|Partly Cloudy||2009||Short film|
|Dug's Special Mission||2009||Short film (edited from Up)|
|Prep & Landing||2009||TV Christmas Special|
|Day & Night||2010||Short film|
|Prep & Landing: Operation: Secret Santa||2010||Short film|
|The Ballad of Nessie||2011||Short film|
|Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice||2011||TV Christmas special|
|La Luna||2011||Short film|
|Toy Story of Terror!||2013||TV Halloween special|
|Toy Story That Time Forgot||2014||TV Christmas special|
|Riley's First Date?||2015||Short film|
|Dante's Lunch||2017||Short film|
|Alias||2001-2006||Bad Robot Productions|
|Fringe||2008 (co-composer of the first season with Chris Tilton and Chad Seiter)|
|Undercovers||2010 (Pilot only)|
|Alcatraz||2012 (Pilot only)|
|Space Mountain at Disneyland||2005||Theme park attraction|
|Space Mountain at Hong Kong Disneyland||2005||Theme park attraction|
|Space Mountain: Mission 2 at Disneyland Paris||2005||Theme Park attraction|
|Space Mountain at Magic Kingdom||2010||Theme park attraction|
|Star Tours: The Adventures Continue at Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, Tokyo Disneyland and Disney's Hollywood Studios||2011||Theme park attraction|
|Ratatouille: L'Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy at Walt Disney Studios Park and Epcot||2014||Theme park attraction|
|Incredicoaster at Disney California Adventure||2018||Theme park attraction|