Over the last 30 years, four-time Oscar nominee Danny Elfman has established himself as one of the most versatile and accomplished film composers in the industry. He has collaborated with such directors as Tim Burton, Gus Van Sant, Sam Raimi, Paul Haggis, Ang Lee, Rob Marshall, Guillermo del Toro, Brian De Palma, and Peter Jackson. Beginning with his first score on Tim Burton’s Peewee’s Big Adventure, Elfman has scored a broad range of films, including: Milk (Oscar nominated), Good Will Hunting (Oscar nominated), Big Fish (Oscar nominated), Men in Black (Oscar nominated), Edward Scissorhands, Wanted, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Mission: Impossible, Planet of the Apes, A Simple Plan, To Die For, Spider-Man (1 & 2), Batman, Dolores Claiborne, Sommersby, Chicago, Dick Tracy, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Alice in Wonderland, David O. Russell’s award-winning films Silver Linings Playbook and American Hustle, Sam Raimi’s Oz: The Great and Powerful, Mr. Peabody and Sherman, the Errol Morris documentary The Unknown Known: The Life and Times of Donald Rumsfeld, and Tim Burton’s Big Eyes. Most recently he has provided the music for Fifty Shades of Grey and Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron.
A native of Los Angeles, Elfman grew up loving film music. He travelled the world as a young man, absorbing its musical diversity. He helped found the band Oingo Boingo, and came to the attention of a young Tim Burton, who asked him to write the score for Pee-wee’s Big Adventure. 25 years later, the two have forged one of the most fruitful composer-director collaborations in film history. In addition to his film work, Elfman wrote the iconic theme music for the television series The Simpsons and Desperate Housewives. He also composed a ballet, Rabbit and Rogue, choreographed by Twyla Tharp, a symphony entitled Serenada Schizophrana for Carnegie Hall, an overture called The Overeager Overture for the Hollywood Bowl, and, Iris — a Cirque du Soleil show. “Having a particular style is not bad,” says Elfman, “but I prefer to push myself in the direction of being a composer who you never know what he’s doing next.”