One of the best parts of any Star Wars film is the music. In 1977, George Lucas knew that audiences might not take his strange space opera seriously if it didn’t have the right score. So, he tapped composer John Williams to help him craft the music for the galaxy far, far away. Since then, Williams contributed music to every Star Wars film, save for Rogue One and Solo. (Though even those films draw heavily on themes he created.) While the movie’s soundtrack used to release before the film, Disney has taken a different approach in recent years. Usually, the soundtrack releases the same day as the film. However, Disney released 23 tracks from the soundtrack for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker early.
Why Would Disney Release the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Soundtrack Now?
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Fans who were around during the release of the prequel trilogy may remember that the score for The Phantom Menace released before the film. Fans eager to get a taste of the next chapter of Star Wars flocked to get the CD. However, many were stunned when they saw that one of the tracks was called “Qui Gon’s Noble End.” To be fair, the older mentor dying in the first chapter of a Star Wars trilogy is to be expected. Still, people didn’t want to find it out while checking out the track listing. Since then, soundtracks were delayed to prevent spoilers.
Yet, as Disney begins its Oscars campaign for Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker they put up a “For Your Consideration” page featuring 23 tracks from the soundtrack. You can stream them all now. It’s not the full score. As we reported in August, John Williams’ brother Don revealed that there would be about 135 minutes of new music. This release runs fewer than 51 minutes. Still, there is plenty of great music to tide us over until the official soundtrack release comes out.
Will the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Spoil the Movie?
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If you are terrified of spoilers, you might want to skip listening to the soundtrack. Themes and leitmotifs present in the tracks might reveal things that you don’t want to know. But it goes further than that. People who’ve downloaded the files said that the titles of the tracks are spoilery. None reveal things on the level of Qui Gon’s Noble End. Yet, people who are aware of the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker movie leaks say that the titles confirm a lot of things from them. So, tread carefully, and perhaps stream them instead of downloading. (Also, doing that is probably illegal, anyway.)
Still, this is a historic moment because this will be the 87-year-old composer’s last turn behind the conductor’s podium for Star Wars. He wanted to end earlier, but after composing Rey’s Theme, he said he didn’t want anyone else to write her music. This film will be the epic conclusion to a saga 40 years in the making. All of them have been scored by the inimitable John Williams. So, if you aren’t worried about specific themes ruining surprises, take one last listen to some new Star Wars music from John Williams.
Check out the For Your Consideration soundtrack at the link. And leave your thoughts, reactions, and love for John Williams in the comments below.
Joshua M. Patton is a father, veteran, and writer living in Pittsburgh, PA. The first books he read on his own were comics, and he's loved the medium ever since. He is the greatest star-pilot in the galaxy, a cunning warrior, and a good friend. His book "What I Learned: Stories, Essays, and More" is available in print from Amazon and from all electronic booksellers.