Ennio Morricone: In His Own Words. Ennio Morricone in conversation with Alessandro De Rosa


This book is in Morricone’s own words, “beyond a shadow of a doubt the best ever written about me, the most authentic, the most detailed and well curated. The truest.” – Ennio Morricone


Master composer Ennio Morricone’s scores go hand-in-hand with the idea of the Western film. Often considered the world’s greatest living film composer, and most widely known for his innovative scores to The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly and the other Sergio Leone’s movies, The Mission, Cinema Paradiso and more recently, The Hateful Eight, Morricone has spent the past 60 years reinventing the sound of cinema. In Ennio Morricone: In His Own Words, composers Ennio Morricone and Alessandro De Rosa present a years-long discussion of life, music, and the marvelous and unpredictable ways that the two come into contact with and influence each other. The result is what Morricone himself defines: “beyond a shadow of a doubt the best book ever written about me, the most authentic, the most detailed and well curated. The truest.

Opening for the first time the door of his creative laboratory, Morricone offers an exhaustive and rich account of his life, from his early years of study to genre-defining collaborations with the most important Italian and international directors, including Leone, Bertolucci, Pasolini, Argento, Tornatore, Malick, Carpenter, Stone, Nichols, De Palma, Beatty, Levinson, Almodóvar, Polanski and Tarantino. In the process, Morricone unveils the curious relationship that links music and images in cinema, as well as the creative urgency at the foundation of his experimentations with “absolute music”. Throughout these conversations with De Rosa, Morricone dispenses invaluable insights not only on composing but also on the broader process of adaptation and what it means to be human. As he reminds us, “Coming into contact with memories doesn’t only entail the melancholy of something that slips away with time, but also looking forward, understanding who I am now. And who knows what else may still happen.

Ennio Morricone: In His Own Words. Ennio Morricone in conversation with Alessandro De Rosa (Oxford University Press, 2019-2020, 368p.)

“Throughout his long and distinguished career, Ennio Morricone has consistently proven to be one of the most imaginative and idiosyncratic composers in the history of cinema. This book reveals the powerful personality behind his brilliant work and will be rewarding reading for anyone interested in the magic of music in film.” – John Williams

“Maestro Morricone has moved my soul to places I could not go alone. An inspiration like no other.” – James ‘Papa Het’ Hetfield, Singer/Songwriter of Metallica

“I feel so fortunate to be alive at a time where I can say that I have witnessed the work of a genius as he weaves his magic in unlimited ways, in infinite settings, with that rare quality of being distinctive and innovative while always being instantly identifiable, and doing all of this in the service of the film at hand, honoring and enhancing it in ways that are indescribably detailed, vivid and perfect. Maestro Morricone is one of my major heroes.” – Pat Metheny

“I have the absolute highest amount of respect for my brother Ennio and I will always be one of his greatest admirers. When I was studying in France, my teacher Nadia Boulanger used to tell me that ‘your music can never be more or less than you are as a human being,’ and I truly believe that is why Ennio’s music is so special: he is simply a great human being! Ennio is the definition of ‘original’ and his compositions are like a window into his mind: incredibly beautiful and genius!” – Quincy Jones

“This book is a must for anyone who admires the music of Morricone.” – Chris Green, Suffolk & Norfolk Life

“The book is set up in an interview style, so the conversation is easy to follow. Each section focuses on the directors Morricone worked with for a particular period of his life, the major films of the period, and his compositional style during that time period. In discussing his evolving style Morricone also references his work outside the cinema world. Summing up: Recommended” – CHOICE

“Enlightening and frequently charming.” – Library Journal

“Le livre constitue la BO de sa vie, les sous-titres d’un destin hors pair.” – Le Figaro Littéraire

“Morricone se livre dans un véritable page turner.” – L’Obs