If you’re not familiar with Paul Williams, he basically wrote the soundtrack for the entire 1970s with pop classics like Rainy Days and Mondays and An Old-Fashioned Love Song–as well as the score for The Muppet Movie.
He’s still quite active today. Last night he won a Grammy for his contributions to Daft Punk’s hit CD Random Access Memories. So what does he have to do with Nerd cinema auteur-extraordinaire Guillermo del Toro? Hit the jump to find out!
Turns out Del Toro’s a huge Phantom of the Paradise fanboy, the 1974 Brian de Palma cult musical Williams starred in and wrote the songs for based loosely on Phantom of the Opera. Del Toro actually owns the original “Phantom” mask from the film (the pic at the head of this piece is Williams as evil record producer Swan in PotP). A few months back, this film was honored here as one of the nerdiest musicals ever made.
If you haven’t seen Phantom of the Paradise–stop reading this right now and WATCH IT.
It’s cool–I’ll wait.
Wasn’t that awesome? Anyhoo, speaking to the press after the Grammys last night, Williams revealed that there’s more to his relationship with Del Toro than merely scoring one of the director’s favorite films:
I’m writing a musical based on Pan’s Labyrinth with Guillermo del Toro, and my whole relationship with Guillermo del Toro is based on his love for Phantom of the Paradise. I’m writing that with Gustavo Santaolalla, who’s a brilliant, brilliant composer from Argentina.
How cool does THAT sound?
Pan’s Labrynth is Del Toro’s modern-day classic about a fantasy world created by a little girl as an escape from the real-life horrors of post civil war Spain. It’s one of the films that marked Del Toro as something more than just another genre director. I personally think it would make an incredible musical, particularly with a tunesmith like Paul Williams at the helm.
I can’t wait to see this show–if it does well, perhaps Pacific Rim: The Musical will be next…
A Nerd can dream, can’t he?
I leave you with a bonus. Here’s Paul Williams performing the final number in Phantom of the Paradise—The Hell of It.