Suspiria remake taps Radiohead's Thom Yorke to compose score

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May 10, 2017

Just like the original film did 40 years ago, the new Suspiria will feature a score from an artist in the rock genre.

But unlike the 1977 Dario Argento classic, which used the relatively obscure (at least outside their home country) Italian band Goblin to create one of the most memorable horror film scores of all time, the new Suspiria is going for a modern rock giant: According to a press release, Radiohead singer Thom Yorke has been tapped to compose the music for director Luca Guadagnino's remake.

Although Yorke has contributed music to movies both on his own and with Radiohead, this will mark the first time that he has composed the score for a feature film (his bandmate, guitarist Jonny Greenwood, is a noted film composer in his own right, scoring movies like There Will Be Blood, We Need to Talk About Kevin and The Master). Guadagnino said in a statement:

“Thom’s art transcends the contemporary. To have the privilege of his music and sound for Suspiria is a dream come true. The depth of his creation and artistic vision is so unique that our Suspiria will sound groundbreaking and will deeply resonate with viewers. Our goal is to make a movie that will be a disturbing and transforming experience: for this ambition, we could not find a better partner than Thom.”

A multi-instrumentalist as well as a singer, Yorke plays guitar, piano, synthesizers and other keyboards, sequencers, bass and drums; it's not known yet whether he will utilize rock instruments for his score or go a more traditional orchestral route. But the notion of employing a rock artist -- and a groundbreaking one at that -- is a nice homage to Argento’s use of Goblin for the original film's percussive, wildly unique score.

Amazon Studios will distribute Suspiria theatrically in the U.S., although a release date has yet to be announced. The film stars Tilda Swinton, Dakota Johnson, Mia Goth, Chloë Grace Moretz, Lutz Ebersdorf and Jessica Harper, who played the central role in the original cult classic. A new synopsis accompanied the Yorke announcement:

Susie Bannion, a young American woman, travels to the prestigious Markos Tanz Company in Berlin in the year 1977. She arrives just as one of the Company’s members, Patricia, has disappeared under mysterious circumstances. As Susie makes extraordinary progress under the guidance of Madame Blanc, the Company’s revolutionary artistic director, she befriends another dancer, Sara, who shares her suspicions that the Matrons, and the Company itself, may be harboring a dark and menacing secret.

Suspiria is such a weird and wonderful movie in its own way that a remake always seemed like a difficult proposition, but this director, this cast and now this composer have all piqued our interest. What about you?