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From John Williams’ soaring fanfares in the Star Wars and Indiana Jones franchises to Danny Elfman’s recognizable composition style in films like Pee-wee’s Big Adventure, Beetlejuice, and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, with the right touch, music can elevate the greatness of any production. Such is certainly the case in Netflix’s upcoming series, One Piece. A colorful adaptation of Eiichiro Oda’s manga series, the live-action production promises to dazzle the audience’s senses beyond sight. In an interview with Collider’s Arezou Amin, composers Sonya Belousova and Giona Ostinelli chatted about the importance of the show’s score.
Giving the highest praise that a composer can receive, Amin commented that even if “everything but the music cut out, you’d still be able to follow the narrative.” An incredibly important part of the storytelling process, Belousova said, “It’s so essential to be able to create a strong thematic foundation because there is so much happening in a show like that.” For each character and situation, the pair set out to add themes for the audience to audibly return to during each episode. “We have five main characters, we have so many villains, so many different islands. It’s a lot of information that’s happening at the same time, so having that solid thematic foundation is the key to approaching a project like that.”
With a massive list of credits under their belts, Belousova and Ostinelli have been musical collaborators for a long time, bringing well-defined scores to productions including The Witcher, The Romanoffs, Spike’s The Mist series, Lying and Stealing, Homeland, Before I Go to Sleep, Dexter, Game Change, Community, New Girl, and many others.
A Passion for Building Worlds
With music playing such an important piece in any production, Belousova and Ostinelli say that the process of “world-building” is their favorite one. Calling their time scoring The Witcher as “such a joy and such an adventure,” Belousova said they were on the hunt for another gig that would allow them to shape a universe through music. “We love music world-building,” she explained, adding that the pair has an affinity for “projects that require a very elaborate, very particular, and unique world-building. These types of projects are always the ones on our radar, and as soon as we learned about One Piece… the live-action adaptation, we knew that that was the project for us to get involved.”
Check out the trailer for One Piece below and catch the series when it sails onto Netflix on August 31, 2023.