Lord of the Rings Trailer Music

Seen a good trailer lately?  What about the music in it?  Much of the music used in trailers, because of the lead times involved do not contain any score written for the eventual film.  That's when the marketing department gets creative and goes out to find some of the best music to make the trailer perfect.

The following are broken down time-wise, listing only long enough clips of music that is recognizable on a casual listen, and are probably not originally created sound effects.  I use publicly available resources and my own two ears to research these sources, so no I do not have secret sources.

If you have a question about a movie other than Lord of the Rings, please consult the trailer music database at Soundtrack.net

Lord of the Rings Internet Preview (released March 2000)
0:00-0:35 "Wired!" Immediate Music Listen
0:36-1:12 Gothic Power Christopher Field  
Lord of the Rings Teaser #1 (released January 2001)
0:00-0:34 "Orch Rising #3" Immediate Music Listen
0:34-0:54 Gothic Power Christopher Field  
Fellowship of the Ring Teaser #2 (released May 2001)
0:00-0:31 1. Mystic's Dream Loreena McKennit The Visit  
0:38-1:35 Original Trailer Music Daniel Nielsen / Michael Giacchino  
1:49-2:03 12. "Mother Africa Reprise" Hans Zimmer The Power Of One: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Fellowship of the Ring Final Trailer (released September 2001)
0:00-0:29 "Watch the Birdy" Immediate Music Listen
0:29-1:00 5. "Attack on Murron" James Horner Buy Online | Braveheart: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
1:00-1:10 1. "City of Angels" Graeme Revell The Crow: City Of Angels - Original Score Album
1:15-1:40, 1:54-2:36 Gothic Power Christopher Field  


All Fellowship of the Ring by Howard Shore unless noted:

The Two Towers Preview
(released March 2002)
approx. 0:00-0:54 track12 "The Journey In The Dark"  
approx. 1:04-2:04 track14 "Lothlorien"  
approx. 2:44-3:37 track13 "The Bridge of Khazad Dum"  
The Two Towers Teaser (released July 2002)
0:00-0:45 track14 "Lothlorien"  
1:11-1:28 track13 "The Bridge of Khazad Dum"  
The Two Towers Trailer (released October 2002)
0:00-0:32 track15 "The Great River"  
0:33-0:47 track10 "The Council of Elrond"  
0:47-1:35 track8 "Flight to the Ford"  
1:36-3:03 "Requiem for a Tower" - Simone Benyacar / Dan Nielsen / Veigar Mairgersson - Based on "Requiem for a Dream" by Clint Mansell  
  for more, see:
  Sountrack.net: Two Towers | TheOneRing.net article | Clint Mansell's Official Site | Lux Aeterna and The Two Towers


All The Two Towers by Howard Shore unless noted:
Return of the King Preview
(released August 26, 2003 [bootleg July 30], film footage at end only)
timings pertain to entire preview on Two Towers DVD
10:21-10:42 track11 "The Leave Taking"  
10:43-11:05 The Fellowship of the Ring, DVD chapter 11 "Buckleberry Ferry"  
11:06-11:45 DVD chapter 23, "Of Herbs and Stewed Rabbit"  
The Return of the King Trailer (released September 26, 2003)
0:15-1:00 track14, "Breath of Life"  
1:02-1:30 track17, "Isengard Unleashed"  
1:39-2:56 Original trailer music by Howard Shore / Simone Benyacar / Craig Stuart Garfinkle - based on "Epicalypse", using Shore's Gondor theme (thanks to Soundtrack.net and CSG)
  Download a copy of 'Boromir at the Council' to hear this theme at Hirgon's Lord of the Rings Music Clips


The Lord of the Rings Trilogy Trailer ("Supertrailer") (released December 9, 2003)
Notes from Magpie: I went through and made a list of all the music. I referenced OST tracks 'as heard in..' but this was meant mostly as a suggestion for where to find the theme. I am not saying that track contains that exact music. Timstamps from online version and may differ from what is available on DVD. Visit Magpie's site for in-depth information on Lord of the Rings music, sources and more.
0:13 - 0:44 Ring Theme (this variation is not on an OST - other variations in multiple places)
0:44 - 1:06 Shire Theme (as in FOTR OST-2 Concerning Hobbits)
1:11 - 1:33 Choral Music with Descending Third Motif (as in FOTR OST-5 The Black Rider)
1:35 - 1:47 Ringwraiths' Theme (as in FOTR OST-5 The Black Rider)
1:47 - 2:13 Fellowship Theme (as in FOTR OST-13 The Bridge of Khazad-Dûm)
2:16 - 2:23 The Pity of Gollum's Theme (as heard in FOTR OST-3 The Shadow of the Past)
2:34 - 3:00 non-thematic music (from OST-13 The Bridge of Khazad-Dûm)
3:00 - 3:16 Evenstar Theme (as in TTT OST-8 Evenstar)
3:16 - 3:32 Rohan Theme (as heard in TTT OST-19 Gollum's Song - a good example is in the credit music)
3:32 - 4:30 Nature Theme, sung aka The March of the Ents (as heard in TTT OST-17 Isengard Unleashed)
4:30 - 4:55 The White Rider (in the Fellowship) Theme (as heard in TTT OST-16 Forth Eorlingas)
5:00 - 5:24 I don't think this music is from the movie. I believe this is new material written originally for the ROTK trailer
5:24 - 5:21 The History of the Ring Theme (as in ROTK OST-9 Cirith Ungol)
5:33 - 5:50 Gondor Theme (as heard in ROTK OST-4 The White Tree)
5:50 - 6:05 a little bridge of music not from movie
6:05 - 6:36 In Dreams (as heard in FOTR OST-17 The Breaking of the Fellowship)
Website: A Magpie's Nest -- Discussing the Lord of the Rings Soundtracks

Discussion and Resources

A Discussion with Howard Shore

Excerpt of interview on TolkienOnline.com

(18:28) Q: Is it just the marketing department that comes up with the idea to use the “Requiem for a Dream” sound track on the previews, or how does that happen?

A: Well, that was an ad thing. The didn’t do it on this movie, but they used it on [TTT] . LOTR is such a closed world, in terms of the culture. I think that was the confusion on it. Trailers rarely use the music from the movie. LOTR was so scrutinized, that the fact that it had some other music on it was like “Well, what’s this music???” And in fact, trailer companies do that all the time. It’s like a normal kind of thing. So they just a piece of music. They use my music in other trailers from other movies. But the piece is not in the movie, and not connected to the movie, it’s just part of the advertising for the movie, which is done very “closed”. A contract is given to a trailer company and they have to deliver a trailer and the sound track. So they just do it themselves. You don’t really have any real influence on what they do. It’s a separately contracted thing. On this film, however, I did the trailer, and I did it because of that, because it created so much confusion. So I said, well, I’ll just do it. And I have done them on other movies. Tim Burton does his own. In Ed Wood we used all the music from the film. I prefer that, obviously, but sometimes it’s just not really in your realm of control.

The Ant Farm

Simone Benyacar, Dan Nielsen, Veigar Mairgersson and Craig Stuart Garfinkle are at least a few of the featured composers of a company called The Ant Farm (according to Soundtrack.net's Composer Information).

"The Ant Farm Music Department provides Music Supervision and Music Composition for motion picture advertising. We have seven Music Supervisors and three Composers to help build a marketing campaign. In the past five years our supervisors contributed song selection to such varied projects as Sixth Sense, Catch Me If You Can, Confessions Of A Dangerous Mind, Shrek, Pearl Harbor, and Signs. One of the most exciting achievements was selecting and re-recording a new version of Johnny Mercer's "Something's Gotta Give" with the Royal Crown Revue. The RCR version worked well enough to become the main teaser cue in Nancy Meyers' latest romantic comedy, "Something's Gotta Give".Composition continues to be a key element to our success at The Ant Farm. We create both original material and scores based on existing cues. Our hit list includes scores for Unbreakable, Undercover Brother, Spy Kids 3, Shrek, Pirates Of The Caribbean, Lord Of The Rings (Fellowship Of The Ring), and Lord Of The Rings (The Two Towers). For the Two Towers campaign a re-orchestration of the Requiem For A Dream theme was employed to lift the second half of the trailer into the stratosphere. Three composers, forty musicians, and twenty choral voices helped to create a powerful piece of marketing music.Our goal is to provide music placement and composition that supports and elevates our client campaigns into the all important box office opening and beyond."

Trailers and the companies that make them

Hollywood Reporter

Return to Vendor

The dedicated trailer shops that began springing up during the early 1970s are a vanishing breed. In their place are "diversified motion picture marketing companies" -- their words -- that promise to do everything to promote a movie except physically pluck people out of their homes and deposit them in a theater as the feature begins to roll.
[Read More]

Settling the Score

Music, in the words of the Ant Farm music producer Nathan Duvall, is the key to a successful trailer. "Try to see a trailer without music -- then see if you still want to see the film," he says. [Read More]

Page added September 8, 2002

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