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Emmy Awards: OJ: Made in America composer Gary Lionelli
By Jennifer Walden

The aftermath of a tragic
event plays out in front of
the eyes of the nation. OJ Simpson, wanted for the gruesome murder of his wife and her friend, fails to turn himself in to the authorities. News helicopters follow the police chase that pursues Simpson back to his residence where they plan to take him into custody. Decades later, three-time Emmy-winning composer Gary Lionelli is presented with the opportunity to score that iconic Bronco chase.

Here, Lionelli talks about his approach to scoring ESPN’s massive documentary OJ: Made in America. His score on Part 3 is currently up for Emmy consideration for Outstanding Music Composition for a Limited Series. The entire OJ: Made in America score is available digitally through Lakeshore Records.

Scoring OJ: Made in America seems like such a huge undertaking. It’s a five-part series, and each part is over 90 minutes long. How did you tackle this beast?
I’d never scored anything that long within such a short timeframe. Because each part was so long, it wasn’t like doing a TV series but more like scoring five 90-minute films back-to-back. I just focused on one cue at a time, putting one foot in front of the other so I wouldn’t feel overwhelmed by the full scope of the work and could relax enough to write the score! I knew I’d get to the finish line at some point, but it seemed so far away most of the time that I just didn’t want to dwell on that.

When you got this project, did they deliver it as one crazy, long piece? Or did they give it to you in its separate parts?
I got everything at once, which was totally mind-boggling. When you get any project, you need to watch it before you start working on it. For this one, it meant watching a seven-and-a-half-hour film, which was a feat in and of itself. The scale was just huge on this. Looking back, my eyelids still twitch.

It was a pretty nerve-racking time because the schedule was really tight. That was one of the most challenging parts of doing this project. I could have used a year to write this music, because five films are ordinarily what I‘d do in a year, not six months. But all of us who write music for film know that you have to work within deadlines as a matter of course. So you say yes, and you find a way to do it.

Read More >






Emmy Awards: Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
By Jennifer Walden

Re-recording mixer Brian Bracken and supervising sound editor Benny Mouthon.

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Brigsby Bear director Dave McCary
By Iain Blair

This SNL shorts director embraces whimsy
with his first feature film effort.

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Emmy Awards: HBO’s The Night Of
By Jennifer Walden

Supervising sound editor/re-recording mixer Nicholas Renbeck.

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Review: Lenovo’s ThinkPad
P71 mobile workstation

By Mike McCarthy

Quick Chat: The making of
Big Chicken Small Movie

Editor, Exile co-owner Eric Zumbrunnen gone at 52

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