At Comic-Con this week in San Diego, Bear McCreary will be introduced as the composer for the ABC pilot for Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which aims to bring the Marvel Universe into primetime television with a mythology that is tethered somewhat to the silver screen exploits of the Avengers and S.H.I.E.L.D., the government agency that answers a world with thunder gods and gamma-green monsters.
McCreary’s new post will surprise exactly no one in San Diego. The classically trained pianist and graduate of USC’s Thornton School of Music has been in the ear of discerning genre fans in a big way the past decade as the composer of some truly distinctive themes — among them the unsettling strings that open AMC’s record-setting hit The Walking Dead and the dark tribal exhilaration of the drums that ushered in episodes of the Peabody Award-winning series Battlestar Galactica.
Jeph Loeb, the head of television for Marvel, said McCreary is a collaborator with boundless energy and a gift for finding the “emotional vibrancy” of moments and music and message. We caught up with the 34-year-old McCreary for a quick chat about music, heroes, Joss Whedon, and an old television show about an intergalactic garbage hauler.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: With a project like this there are so many questions from the get-go but is there a place you typically start that investigation? Do you start with pinning down facts or finding feelings?
BEAR MCCREARY: I like to bring something unique to every project I take on, something that can immediately hook the audience and tell them what show or film they’re watching, or game they’re playing. The furious tremolo strings at the beginning of The Walking Dead main title, or the heavy percussion of Battlestar Galactica are great examples. At first glance, I was nervous that Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. would be difficult to approach. … It ties together a cinematic universe that spans years of characters, storylines and scores by talented composers. The instant I saw the pilot, I connected immediately with the characters.
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