John Carpenter Pays Tribute to Ennio Morricone and His Haunting Score for ‘The Thing’

John Carpenter Pays Tribute to Ennio Morricone and His Haunting Score for ‘The Thing’
For John Carpenter, Italian composer Ennio Morricone, who died July 6 at age 91, “is one of the great composers, he was brilliant.” Like most cinephiles, Carpenter discovered him through Sergio Leone’s spaghetti westerns, from the Dollars Trilogy through “The Good, The Bad and the Ugly” and “Once Upon a Time in the West,” which Carpenter considers to be his “triumph. It’s one of the great scores all time, and launched that movie into another place: epic opera. It’s the ultimate in composing. You can’t get better and more profound than that.”

Leone and Morricone were schoolboys together, and collaborated on movies at the script stage. Because Leone never recorded sound on his westerns, the director would play Morricone’s music while he was shooting. “Morricone came from experimental music, a strange place,” said Carpenter, who almost always composed the music for his movies. “The studio had no
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