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This 2CD set presents a key work relating to fantasy filmmaker George Pal, composer Leigh Harline, and the widescreen Cinerama film process: The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm (1962).
One of only two dramatic films shot in three-strip Cinerama (an innovative widescreen format—How the West Was Won was the other), The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm was producer and co-director George Pal’s telling of the story of brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm (Karl Boehm and Laurence Harvey), incorporating three of the famous Grimm fairy tales, anthology-style. Between Pal’s fantasy filmmaking (including his innovative Puppetoons), the hybrid biographical/anthology format, and the widescreen Cinerama lensing, Brothers Grimm was one of the most unique family films ever made.
The prominent soundtrack to The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm was a collaborative effort of songwriter Bob Merrill (Carnival!, Funny Girl) and score composer Leigh Harline (Pinocchio, 7 Faces of Dr. Lao). Merrill wrote five songs and three instrumental themes for the film (including the chipper, catchy main theme), which were incorporated into a charming symphonic score by Harline. Complete with Overture, Intermission and Exit Music, the soundtrack is a major fantasy work that benefits from being recorded in the unique seven-channel, 135 feet-per-minute Cinerama format—yielding terrific sound quality today, with excellent use of the stereo field.
Disc one of this 2CD set presents the premiere release of the complete score to The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm, newly mixed and mastered from the original seven-channel Cinerama masters. Disc two has three sections: First is the David Rose “cover” version of the Brothers Grimm soundtrack released by MGM Records at the time of the film, featuring Rose’s versions of Merrill’s themes on side one, and six contemporary movie themes on side two. In the middle of disc two is a program of bonus tracks from the original soundtrack sessions to Brothers Grimm. Finally, concluding disc two is Leigh Harline’s charming, never-before-released romantic comedy score to the 1961 M-G-M film, The Honeymoon Machine, starring Steve McQueen, with an upbeat title song, “Love Is Crazy” (lyrics by Jack Brooks).
Liner notes to this premiere release are by Jim Lochner—but there was so much to write about that additional notes are presented, for free, online at our website. Go here to begin reading about The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm and the related music presented on this long-awaited album.