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The Impact of John Williams
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The Impact of John Williams on films
A movie without music is like a painting without colors. Hence, a movie is more than just plot. It is the music or the soundtracks that make a movie more appealing to the audience. Film scores have changed the way people view movies today. Music creates the mood in movies that influence how the audience should or could feel throughout the plot. More importantly, music serves as a powerful tool that heightens the realism of a movie by adding dramatic effects that draw different feelings from the viewer. John William has made significant contributions to the film industry through his music. 

 What is the impact of John Williams on films?

John Williams found the emotional core at the center of the film by compelling a mixture of romance, mystery, and terror. He was able to capture the emotional core of the film in his music by using a past music experiences that would help audiences relate to the action and characters. Williams utilized the technique, leitmotif, which is associated with operas and in film scores. The technique is a dynamic that that signifies the plot element, a character, mood, or idea. Many of his film scores were particularly influential in guiding the emotion in the film and illustrating the content of the plot. He brought back symphonic scoring and incorporate electrical varieties musical styles from musicians such as Richard Strauss and Erich Korngold in the late Romatic era.Thus, his music allowed the audience to connect with the on-screen action. Williams brought an added dimension to the film industry using orchestration, various harmonic motifs and progression that complements the movie through his music. Certainly, John Willams' scores have influenced the film industry. He created some of the most iconic film scores of all time. 

I. Music in films
a. creates moods
b. evokes emotions
c. significant contribution by John Williams
II. John Williams
a. exposed to music early in life
b. Julliard school/worked as a pianist
c. became interested in writing for films
III. Early works as a composer and a conductor
a. he began composing for television
b. he partnered up with Steven Spielberg for big-budget films
c. composed and conducted symphonies and concertos
IV. John Williams' most iconic film scores
a. Star Wars, Jaws, Superman, and E.T.
b. pre-dominant film music composer
c. nominated and received honours and awards for his work
d. John Williams has made significant contribution to the film industry which have changed the way audience engage and enjoy films

John Williams, an American conductor, composer, and a pianist, has made significant contributions to film and television music. Williams was born on February 8, 1932 and was raised in New York. He was exposed to music from a young age similarly to the earlier musicians such as Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. At age 6, John Williams studied piano where he learned to various instruments such as trumpet, clarinet, bassoon, trombone, and cello. His genre includes film score, classical music, and jazz. After his service in the U.S. Air Force, he entered the Juilliard School, where he further studied piano; while going to school, he worked as a jazz pianist at nightclubs and recording studios. In 1956, Williams became interested in writing for films after working with other composers. He was writing as many as thirty-nine scores a year for television films after landing a contract with Universal Studios. Consequently, William's work with Steven Spielberg in Star Wars film had a profound effect on his success. His film scores for Star Wars and other iconic movies has changed the Hollywood film fundamentals that influences how the audiences perceive movies in the entertainment industry. His scores not only reflect the action on the screen but also tie together plot elements.  In addition to composing for film, he continued to compose classical music where he developed a reputation as a conductor for the Boston Pops Orchestra.

Star Wars Theme composed by John Williams, 1977-2005.

Superman Theme composed by John Williams, 1978.

John Williams iconic film scores:


John Williams has become the predominant film music composer in the last 25 years. His scores were successful in intensifying the viewers emotional reaction to the film. As a result, his musical work in the film industry has evoke many movie-goers, leaving them awaiting in great anticipation. Williams has received three Emmy Awards, four Golden Globe Awards, five Academy Awards, and 21 Grammy Awards with 47 Academy Award nominations. He is the second most nominated person, after Walt Disney. In addition he was listed into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame in 2000, recognizing him as a composer who has made significant contributions to film and television music. 


 "John Williams." Encyclopedia Britannica. Encyclopedia Britannica Online Academic Edition. Encyclopedia Britannica Inc., 2012. Web. 22 Oct. 2012. <>.

 This encyclopedia is a reference book for various musicians. This encyclopedia denotes the life of John Williams and how his talents influenced the film industry.

Chell, Samuel L. "Music and Emotion in the Classic Hollywood Film: The Case of The Best Years of Our Lives." Film Criticism 8.2 (1984): 27-38. Academic Search Premier. Web. 19 Nov. 2012.

This article talks about John Williams' goals when composing
 his musical scores. He primarily focused on enhancing the experience of the audience

 Cramer, Alfred William. 
Musicians & Composers Of The 20Th Century. n.p.: Salem Press, 2009. eBook Collection (EBSCOhost). Web. 5 Sept. 2012.

This book depicts John William's life as a composer and how his early works impacted the film industry. It also exemplify how his successes in the film industry brought him fame. It also emphasizes how John William used his musical talent to underscore the images on screen, the dialogue, and the sound effects. He changed the ways in which big budget movies are produced, financed, and distributed. The film Jaw was the first film that brought John William's his fame. 

Scheurer, Timothy E. "John Williams and Film Music Since 1971."
Popular Music & Society 21.1 (1997): 59. Academic Search Premier. Web. 19 Nov. 2012.

This book mentioned John Williams other musical contributions to the music industry. 
Although Williams has written and composed numerous musical works, his legacy will be defined by his music in films. It epitomizes John William's biography as well as his journey with working with other film composers such as Steven Spielberg. It also mentions many of John William's great work that earned him many Academy Awards.

illiam, John. "John William Conducts The Main Theme For Star Wars." YouTube. 20 Nov. 2010. Web 18 Oct. 2012. <>.

This is an audio recording of John William conducting the main theme song from Star Wars.  William's score gained mainstream popularity making the theme song recognizable  by many viewers.