The BRAAAHMfather Hans Zimmer regrets dropping the BRAAAHM

Senior Editor
11.07.13 25 Comments


When composer Hans Zimmer first dropped the BRAAAAAHMs in the Inception trailer, he couldn’t have realized it at the time, but the world had changed forever. The devastation it wrought was unprecedented, and soon it seemed like every movie had BRAAAAAAHMs and they were threatening to fire them off at each other willy nilly. Even worse, what would happen should the BRAAAAAAHMs fall into the wrong hands? Like Robert Oppenheimer before him, Zimmer now says he “feels horrible” when his BRAAAAHMs are used in movie trailers. Forgive him, father, he knew not what he BRAAAAAAAHM.

From Vulture:

So how does Zimmer feel when he sees a new commercial that apes his bold Inception score? “Oh, it’s horrible!” he moans. “This is a perfect example of where it all goes wrong. That music became the blueprint for all action movies, really. And if you get too many imitations, even I get confused!” He’s even witnessed the phenomenon firsthand: “By the time we got to The Dark Knight Rises, the studio sent over a trailer with that temp track, and they actually apologized for it. They said, ‘We put the Inception music in there because we didn’t know what else to do, so could you guys maybe come up with something else?’ So we came up with a trailer that was just a few lonely notes — it couldn’t have been more opposite.”

So where did all those BRAMMS [I think she means BRAAAAAHM -Ed.] originally come from? “That sound was in the script,” says Zimmer. “I remember before we made the movie, Chris and I were in London at the Sherlock Holmes premiere, and of course it ends up with the two of us in the corner somewhere talking about the movie we’re about to make while everyone else is around us at the premiere going wild. We’re such party animals. And I said, ‘I’ll tell you what, let’s just go and book a studio and get a couple of brass players.’ The sound, really, is that I put a piano in the middle of a church and I put a book on the pedal, and these brass players would basically play into the resonance of the piano. And then I added a bit of electronic nonsense. But really, it just came from saying, ‘Let’s experiment.’”

I like to imagine Christopher Nolan having to type “BRAAAAAAAAAHM” in the set directions. Let this be a lesson to you, aspiring screenwriters, when a sound effect is that important to the film, nothing can be left to chance. I’ve heard the writer of the last Kevin James vehicle sent out his scripts with actual whoopee cushions.

Here’s your own BRAAAAAAHMMM if you need something to do with the rest of your day.

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