Like everyone, I saw Elf when it was first released in theaters in 2003. I was a fan of Swingers, and Will Ferrell’s skits on SNL cracked me up. It seemed like a sure-fire hit. And I haven’t been surprised that it has become an annual tradition for many families to watch it around the holidays. I loved the story, the performances, the direction, and, of course, the music. Debney’s melodies from the film are like earworms that stay with you long after the movie has finished. I approached John a few years ago about publishing Cutthroat Island. He was enthusiastic about it. For one reason or another, it didn’t materialize, but at least I was on his radar. Fast forward to 2023 when I was orchestrating a Wimpy Kid Christmas movie for John Paesano, and all I heard was Elf-inspired music (the film was heavily temped with Debney’s music). I wondered, “Why not ask Debney if he’d be okay with Omni publishing Elf? Many musicians would probably like a companion book to the film score as they watch the movie around Christmas.” Lo and behold, that thought became the impetus behind publishing the full score. With the help of David LeSueur to convert the Finale Files into Sibelius, I could release the book in time for the 2023 holiday season.
Who else to write the music about a human who thinks he’s an elf than John Debney? With scores like Liar, Liar, and Bruce Almighty, he has repeatedly proven himself an expert in the comedy genre. Since director Jon Favreau chose a “Rankin/Bass” palette, Debney follows suit with a nostalgic, charming, and quirky score for the adventures of a North Pole elf in modern-day New York City.
172 pages, 9X12 inches. Paperbound, printed in U.S.A
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