When Warner Bros. tapped Joss Whedon to take over as the director of Justice League, Zack Snyder wasn't the only person that wound up being replaced on the film. Composer Tom Holkenborg, also known as Junkie XL, left the project alongside Snyder, and Danny Elfman ended up taking the reigns on the film's score. When he departed Justice League four years ago, Holkenborg had already finished about half of his work on the film, so it may come as a surprise to learn that he tossed the previous work out the window and started the entire score from scratch when he was brought back for the Snyder Cut.
Zack Snyder's Justice League is a four-hour behemoth of a movie, and the task of scoring it has often been referred to by Holkenborg as his "Mount Everest." It seems like it may have been easier to keep what he already had from the original film and add onto it for the Snyder Cut, but Holkenborg was ready for a fresh start.
"When I played some of these older pieces of music back, there were a couple of things that went through my mind," Holkenborg said during a recent roundtable interview. "One was by listening to that music again, I was immediately reminded of that painful time period that we went through together, which was one reason to start the score from scratch and from the ground up."
Holkenborg went on to say that his decision to start over wasn't just about the pain associated with the past. He felt that he'd grown a lot as an artist since leaving Justice League, and he wanted to bring everything he'd learned to the Snyder Cut in order to deliver the best possible product.
"Second, I thought I grew so much as a composer in the last four or five years, working with all these great directors — Robert Rodriguez, James Cameron, Peter Jackson, George Miller, Tim Miller — that I really thought when I saw the film that Zack was editing now demanded the best of what I potentially had to offer," he continued. "And so that was another very important reason to start over. And basically after I decided that, I called Zack and I said, 'Do you mind if I start over?' And he said, 'No, by all means.' But he wasn't necessarily married to anything that we cooked up in those days. And he also added, 'Keep in mind when you start that the shackles are off.' Which basically meant that whatever my vision, together with Zack, was going to be the final vision and there was no interference of studio and producers on this particular film. Which, as some of you know, is extremely unique. This only happens to final cut directors like George Miller, James Cameron, Peter Jackson and Chris Nolan, for instance. So I'm lucky enough to work with a few of those."
Like the Snyder Cut itself, Holkenborg's score runs about four hours in length, and fans seem to be loving every minute of the music.
What do you think Tom Holkenborg's new Justice League score? Let us know in the comments!