“Star Wars” takes the cake as one of the most iconic films of all time. Yet within “Star Wars,” there are many iconic scenes that stand out within the movie itself. Perhaps one these iconic scenes is the cantina scene from “A New Hope.” Back in 1977, the scene almost looked like it was pulled out of a western–of course with some science fantasy-esque modifications, and it went a long way in establishing the “lived-in” world that “Star Wars” became so well known for. But one of the most memorable things in the scene has to be the music.
Since “A New Hope’s” release, it’s been parodied a thousand times over, solidifying its place in the pop culture aether. As iconic as it is, one wouldn’t expect director J.J. Abrams to try and emulate the scene in the upcoming “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” film, would he? While one wouldn’t call it emulating, “The Force Awakens” definitely has a scene that Abrams is calling “[his] version of the cantina scene.” Needless to say, the music will go hand-in-hand with a scene like that.
While on “The Tonight Show,” Abrams reveals that composer John Williams actually opted out of composing the music for that scene. The man preferred to stick to the actual score of the movie. This, of course, left a job open for a composer to take over.
Completely unrelated to the John Williams situation, Abrams and his son attend the musical “Hamilton,” a play about Alexander Hamilton–the man on the U.S. ten dollar bill.
“I go to see the show with our son, and at intermission, Lin-Manuel Miranda — who wrote it, conceived it and normally stars in it, he wasn’t in it that night — comes up to me. And my mind is blown, because he’s so brilliant, and he says, “Hey, if you need music for the cantina, I’ll write it.”
This confused Abrams for a brief moment, as he wasn’t sure if Miranda had known that Williams had not wanted to score that specific scene. Regardless, Abrams got in touch.
“I end up emailing Lin-Miranda saying, ‘I know you were kidding, but if you actually want to write this music, I’m actually working on something.’ He’s like, ‘I’ll drop everything.’ I’m like, ‘all right.'”
The two proceeded to send each other music files back and forth until it was complete. Now all that’s left is for fans to judge if it holds up to the original.
We have less than a month left. Are you looking forward to seeing Abrams’ version of the cantina scene? Letus know down below!
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” hits theaters on December 18, 2015.