John Debney To Compose Lee Unkrich’s Untitled ‘Dia de los Muertos’ Film? [updated 2x]

John Debney to score Coco

Pixar knows a good thing when they find it. They spend a lot of time working to find the right team to craft their films – from the internal team of Pixarians to the external vocal talent and composers, it’s all planned with careful precision. For composers specifically, that list has been narrowed to four individuals who have helped bring life to the lineup of Pixar’s fifteen current films. (We’ve listed the composers and their respective films below for reference.)

For the upcoming slate of films, some names may seem destined – Thomas Newman is almost certainly reprising his fishy role for Finding Dory (especially since Director, Andrew Stanton tweeted in 2013 that “T Newman IS Nemo” when asked about Finding Dory).

Randy Newman may be pegged to score Toy Story 4 since he completed the first three (although they could look to a different composer to take the film in a different direction after the trilogy wrapped up).

Is a new composer entering the lineup of Pixar alumni?

Veteran composer, John Debney (The Spongebob Movie: Sponge Out Of WaterChicken Little & the upcoming live-action Jungle Book among many others) recently updated his IMDb page to note that he is in pre-production on an Untitled Pixar Animation Project slated to release in 2017.

Since the only “Untitled” project on the docket is Lee Unkrich’s film surrounding the Dia de los Muertos holiday, we can only assume that this is the project he could be connected with.

John Debney to score Coco

An interesting side-note regarding Unkrich’s film is that Randy Newman recently stated that it would be Pixar’s first musical. With the combined news of the potential of this being a musical as well as a new composer entering the mix, this film could certainly shape up to be a major shift for the studio. What are your thoughts? Leave a comment below or chat about it with other fans in the Pixar Post Forum.

Update – It should be noted that in IMDb when you click on the untitled project, it states that the film is being directed by Dan Scanlon, not Lee Unkrich. It’s interesting to see what film this could be since (as we knew), the November 22, 2017 film slot was paired with Unkrich’s film.

Remember that this is all up in the air at this point since nothing has officially been announced – we will continue to watch the project for further updates.

Update 2 (August 4) – Debney’s IMDb page has since been updated and the project is no longer listed. Of course, we now know that Michael Giacchino was the composer behind Coco.

Pixar’s Feature Film Composers To-Date

Randy Newman

  • Toy Story (1995)
  • A Bug’s Life (1998)
  • Toy Story 2 (1999) 
  • Monsters, Inc. (2001)
  • Cars (2006)
  • Toy Story 3 (2010)
  • Monsters University (2013)

Thomas Newman

  • Finding Nemo (2003)
  • WALL•E (2008)

Michael Giacchino

  • The Incredibles (2004)
  • Ratatouille (2007)
  • Up (2009)
  • Cars 2 (2011)
  • Inside Out (2015)

Patrick Doyle

  • Brave (2012)
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