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The Religious Affiliation of Film Composer
Franz Waxman


From: Gene D. Phillips,
Major Film Directors of the American and British Cinema, Associated University Presses: Cranbury, NJ (1990), page 121: It was rather exception at the time for a major studio to end a picture wihtout the customary musical finale. Asked why he decided to dispense with the usual closing music for the film [The Nun's Story], Zinneman replied: "While Franz Waxman was scoring the picture I discovered that he had a deep dislike for the Catholic Church, and this was coming across in his music. The theme he wrote for the convent scenes would have been more appropriate for scenes set in a dungeon, so I got him to write another. For the finalscene he wrote an exultant theme to tend the film, and I removed it from the sound track. When Jack Warner asked me why I had done so, I answered his question with another: 'What kind of music do you want at the end of the picture? If the music expresses gloom, it will imply that it is too bad that Sister Luke left the convent. If it is joyful, people will think that Warner Brothers is encouraging nuns to leave the convent.' And so the movie ends in silence, the way I wanted it to."

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Webpage created 3 August 2005. Last modified 3 August 2005.
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