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Titles of films John Barry was alleged to be scoring in the past, but that did not happen or scores were replaced. Several titles may have been be mere speculation at the time and hold no truth whatsoever.

  • Promise Her Anything +

    Promise Her Anything

    Composer Lyn Murray said the "powers" didn't like Barry's score, and ask him to replace it; he added he did not hear Barry's score. Leslie
    Bricusse was to have written the title song with Barry and may well have done.

    Composer: Lyn Murray

  • What's New Pussycat +

    What's New Pussycat

    Considered but unavailable

    Composer: Burt Bacharach

  • Sinful Davy +

    Sinful Davy

    A 19th century contemporary score which Barry says he wrote and recorded for John Huston but the producers rejected the score and subsequently wouldn't return it to Barry.
    Lukas Kendall of 'Film Score Monthly' has checked the studio vaults for 'Sinful Davey' and sadly, but not surprisingly, it's not there. It must be 99.999% certain that the studio executives who hated the score destroyed the masters thus depriving us of what may well have been a classic Barry score.
    The themes from Sinful Davey may have been recycled into other scores but we'll never know for certain unless Barry can remember and is willing to discuss it.

    John Middleton wrote in our discussion forum: Score recorded at CTS. Masters held across the road in a basement which was flooded during a cloudburst. No-one realised about the flood for some time.

    Composer: Ken Thorne

  • Anne of The Thousand Days +

    Anne of The Thousand Days

    Composer: Georges Delerue

  • Battle Of Britain +

    Battle Of Britain

    Apparently, John Barry turned down the assignment before Goodwin was asked.

    When they asked Goodwin the first time, he declined. After they found no other (Barry and apparently others) willing to replace Walton, they asked Goodwin the second time. Goodwin doubled his fee, and to his surprise Saltzman said OK.

    Composer: Ron Goodwin, William Walton

  • Love Story +

    Love Story

    Anthony Harvey was to direct, but Barry left when Arthur Hiller signed on. 

    Composer: Francis Lai

  • Get Carter +

    Get Carter

    Considered but unavailable

    Composer: Roy Budd

  • Live and Let Die +

    Live and Let Die

    Unavailable: fell out with Harry Saltzman, and working on Billy.

    Composer: George Martin / titlesong: Paul McCartney and Wings

  • Don't Look Now +

    Don't Look Now

    "Frances" DVD has interesting tidbits apparently reveals by interviews and commentary that Barry was offered this Nic Roeg's film. Apparently, it isn't revealed why Barry didn't do them.

    Composer: Pino Donaggio

  • The Man Who Fell To Earth +

    The Man Who Fell To Earth

    "Frances" DVD has interesting tidbits apparently reveals by interviews and commentary that Barry was offered this Nic Roeg's film. Apparently, it isn't revealed why Barry didn't do them. 

    Composer: John Phillips, Stomu Yamashta

  • The Spy Who Loved Me +

    The Spy Who Loved Me

    Unavailable due to tax-related problems

    Composer: Marvin Hamlisch

  • Gulliver's Travels +

    Gulliver's Travels (1972)

    Peter Hunt mentioned in an interview that Barry and Black had written a substantial amount but when the film went into financial hiatus, and was effectively locked up, the whole project got shelved. When the finance came back, Hunt contacted Barry and Black, but Barry had withdrawn his music by then.

  • First Love +

    First Love

    Began as a song score, wasn't working. Barry hired to write a complete score, parts of which were rejected as "too mature," resulting in a hybrid song score/ Barry score. At this point, Barry asked his name be removed, but his name was seen as composer on the theatrical posters and (b) there were unmistakable Barryisms in the snippets of score that (still) remain. The director just couldn't make up her mind.
    In January 2013, a limited edition of John Barry's score was released on CD by Lalalaland Records.

  • For Your Eyes Only +

    For Your Eyes Only

    Unavailable due to tax-related problems

    Composer: Bill Conti

  • Clash of the Titans +

    Clash of the Titans

    According to writer Martyn Crosthwaite, who had conducted in-depth interviews with Barry, Barry had a disagreement with the producers over his overture and left the project having written nothing more. However, Ray Harryhausen claimed Barry's complete score was rejected as unsuitable.

    In 2001 Barry told Ford Thaxton: "I can't remember for sure. I don't think I got too involved. I think I may have done some demos on that and they didn't like the way I was going with it and that was probably it."

    Composer: Laurence Rosenthal

  • The Right Stuff +

    The Right Stuff

    In an interview in the late eighties, Barry said that director Phil Kaufman was a frustrated musician who was unable to get his take on the music across. At one point, to describe the music he wanted, Kaufman said: "you're walking in the desert and you see a cactus, and you put your foot on it, but it just starts growing up through your foot."

    Barry told Ford Thaxton "I wrote several things and Phil Kaufman was very up on all the rest of it and everything. It was going very well, and then there were certain problems on the movie down the line, and he needed an excuse for delaying the production. The details are a little foggy now, but I've always remembered my association with Kaufman was also one of the most dishonest pieces of behavior I've ever encountered in the movie industry. I'll leave it at that."

    Composer: Bill Conti (Academy Award)

  • Once Bitten +

    Once Bitten

    Barry wrote two demo themes, didn't get the job. Recycled them into Best Man In The World for Golden Child.

    Composer: John Du Prez


  • Farm of the Year +

    Farm of the Year

    Because of his ilness - ruptured oesophagus, JB had to leave the music for Farm of the Year, retitled 'Miles from Home'

    Composer: Robert Folk

  • Licence To Kill +

    Licence To Kill

    The producers wanted him to score this movie but because he was still recovering from serious illness it was considered unsafe for him to fly to London to work on the score. They left it as late as possible before hiring Michael Kamen.

    Composer: Michael Kamen

  • Stella +


    In an interview Barry says he had finished composing the score and the "powers that be" decided the film should be a comedy instead of drama and asked him to redo the main theme. Barry refused, and walked off the picture.

    Composer: John Morris

  • The Russia House +

    The Russia House

    Can anyone confirm?

    Composer: Jerry Goldsmith

  • The Prince of Tides +

    The Prince of Tides

    Fell out with director and left.

    Composer: James Newton Howard

  • CrissCross +


    Saw film and decided he wasn't interested. As told to Geoff by him.

    Composer: Trevor Jones

  • The Bodyguard +

    The Bodyguard

    New director, Barry left.

    Composer: Alan Silvestri and pop songs

  • Year of the Comet +

    Year of the Comet

    Main theme is used in the film's trailer towards the end.

    Composer: Hummie Mann

  • Of Mice and Men +

    Of Mice and Men

    Composer: Mark Isham

  • 1492 +


    JB told Geoff that the director once offered to show him the film but that was as far as it went. He never heard from him again on the subject.

    Composer: Vangelis

  • Sleepless in Seattle +

    Sleepless in Seattle

    'I was offered Sleepless in Seattle. They sent me the script. They asked me to do it, and I said I would be very interested. But then I heard there was a so-called "musical supervisor," and whenever I hear that I want to run. So then the musical supervisor came into the picture. And then I spoke to a guy who runs Epic Music in Los Angeles. And he said he wanted these songs, and I said "can I have a list? Fax me a list." And there were about 20 songs, and I said, "Well, where am I?" Right then I didn't want to do this movie.'

    Composer: Marc Shaiman

  • It Could Happen To You +

    It Could Happen To You

    Composer: Carter Burwell

  • The Grass Harp +

    The Grass Harp

    Composer: Patrick Williams

  • Goldeneye +


    Was asked to score but was too busy on other projects and also wanted to spend time with his very young son.

    Composer: Eric Serra

  • The Juror +

    The Juror

    "I met with the director, Brian Gibson, and told him how I work. I would give him themes, and then I go off and work, and then go to Los Angeles, he's finished shooting, we spot the movie. I did a few things which he really liked a lot, and which Columbia liked. Then he said, "Well, what about the rest of the music?" and I said, "What about the rest of the music?" He said, "I want to hear it." I said, "This is not an audition, Brian. This is your second movie. If there's anything at the end of the  day that you don't like, then we have a little session."

    Composer: James Newton Howard

  • The English Patient +

    The English Patient

    Was approached but refused.

  • Tomorrow Never Dies +

    Tomorrow Never Dies

    Wanted proper fee, full creative control (the song), both of which he was refused.

    Composer: David Arnold

  • Bliss +


    Barry recorded some violin pieces that were played on set while filming, but a scheduling problem led to him being unable to do the score in the end.

    Composer: Jan A.P. Kaczmarek

  • Seven Years in Tibet +

    Seven Years in Tibet

    Hhad conversations with director but never signed.

    Composer: John Williams

  • Ever After +

    Ever After

    Wrote a theme as a demo, which was rejected.

    Composer: George Fenton

  • The Horse Whisperer +

    The Horse Whisperer

    Wrote and recorded several demo themes but disagreements with director Robert Redford led to him leaving the project. He did not compose and record a complete score, as has been suggested.

    Composer: Thomas Newman

  • The End Of The Affair +

    The End Of The Affair

    Wrote demo theme, presumably rejected. It's now a track on Eternal Echoes.

    Composer: Michael Nyman

  • Goodbye Lover +

    Goodbye Lover

    Wrote and recorded full score. However, the film's writer, Ron Peer, who was delighted that John was the composer, believes he did not want to "lighten" his score in certain places as required by the director during the editing process. Hence John Ottman was brought in to write a replacement score. It's worth noting that actress Ellen DeGeneres claimed that test audiences reacted badly to the film originally ending with her character being killed, so she was called back to re-shoot the ending.

    Composer: John Ottman

  • Tom's Midnight Garden +

    Tom's Midnight Garden

    Director Willard Carroll wanted Barry (him being a big fan), made one phone call just to check out availability but there was never any discussion beyond that.

    Composer: Debbie Wiseman

  • Thomas and the Magic Railroad +

    Thomas and the Magic Railroad

    Barry was initially very enthusiastic about this (his son was a big fan of the stories) and wrote several songs with Don Black. However, he eventually decided the film was not going the way he had envisaged and left.

    Composer: Hummie Mann

  • The Incredibles +

    The Incredibles

    Worked on this for some time but apparently the studio did not agree with his take. There seems to have been a misunderstanding as director Brad Bird hired him on the basis that he would write a score which was a pastiche of his James Bond scores.  Barry had no intention of scoring it that way and even his trailer music was replaced by a real Bond theme - OHMSS!  They could not agree and Barry left.

    Composer: Michael Giacchino

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 Projects which never saw the day of light.
  • The Jam +

    The Jam

    Barry bought the rights and planned to act as composer/producer.

  • Travels with Charlie +

    Travels with Charlie

    Barry bought the rights and planned to act as composer/producer with segments to be directed by people like Kevin C. I seem to recall that Jim Wilson might have been a co-producer? Not sure! Barry publicised this quite a lot in the sweep of post-Dances popularity but (obviously) it never arrived.

  • 1

Thanks to: Stephen Woolston, Pete Greenhill, James Southall, David N. Butterworth, Michael Storck, Matt Manning, Ron van Overveldt, Guenther Koegebehn, Mike Copping, John Middleton.

Other sources: "John Barry - A Life In Music", "Score" (Dutch film music magazine, which also mentioned: Property of a Lady (a Bond title rumour), Lonesome Dove, and called The Horse Whisperer the new Bond ! in 1996.
Read 48229 times Last modified on Thursday, 16 April 2015 14:55
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