John Williams has been lauded by none other than Mark Hamill who has stated “Aside from George Lucas, nobody deserves more credit for the success of Star Wars than John Williams.”
Hamill’s interest [in soundtracks] was sparked as a child, first taking note of Carl Stalling’s name as composer on old Warner Bros. cartoons, then Bernard Herrmann’s on the fantasy films of special-effects wizard Ray Harryhausen. “I saw ‘Jason and the Argonauts’ on a double bill with ‘7th Voyage of Sinbad,’” Hamill tells Variety. “I could hum the main-title themes from the time I saw them.
The year 1976 was a pivotal one for Hamill — it was then that he was cast in George Lucas’ sci-fi adventure movie. “Jaws was the only film of John Williams I knew before he did Star Wars,” Hamill says. “Obviously, as ‘Johnny’ Williams, he paid his dues in television, but I didn’t come to know that until much later.”
Hamill still has vivid memories of being introduced to Williams’ now iconic score for the first film when producer Gary Kurtz picked him up from his Malibu house en route to a dubbing session. “It was a two-seater sports car with a good sound system,” Hamill remembers. “He put this tape in, and I was absolutely blown away. By the time we reached our destination, I was levitating. I couldn’t believe it. There were tears streaming down my face. I was so overwhelmed, so moved, so delighted. His music was epic. For a movie as modest as ours, his music elevated it to the status of ‘Lawrence of Arabia.’”
Read the full interview at Variety.com here.