Film Composer

A film composer is a person who creates music for a film score. a film composer must know how to read and write music, have a good understanding of music software's, and be able to orchestrate music.

James Newton Howard

It is crucial for a film composer to work with the directors, producers, musicians and sound team because they need to understand the plot, atmosphere, and dramatic tension to create music that suits the film. Usually, they will consult with a creative team so that they can figure out the basics to the music score. Composers must also have considerable knowledge of the software's used to produce music. One of the more common ways of getting the basics of a score written is by hooking up a keyboard to a computer and playing the general notes that you want in the piece, which is then transposed through the computer onto staff paper.

John Williams, “Star Wars.” “E.T.” “Jaws.” “Indiana Jones.” “Superman.” “Harry Potter.”

The education needed for a film composer is a bachelors, masters, or doctorate in music composition but it not just about being able to create music. Patience, musical talent, knowledge of instruments, networking and marketing and singing are all fair game in earning you job as a film composer.


  • Proficiency with multiple instruments
  • singing abilities
  • Appreciation of music history are all helpful attributes
  • Patience
  • Persistence
  • The ability to network and market one's talents

Film composers often have to have a free schedule because they could be working in a score for months on end and to be able to work in a variety of styles. On average, for a 100-minute movie, they would have to compose 50 minute of music. Unfortunately, composer are only given approximately 2 months to write and record the music so time management is very important.

Hans Zimmer

A film composers average pay is between 40000 and 60000 depending on education and experience. They would work in a studio of their own or one for temporary use close to the filming areas.

This is definitely a career I am interested in because I've always enjoyed music, especially composing for large orchestras and I love the film industry and behind the scenes of movies and scores used.

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.