×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

A place to experiment and create

Billion-Dollar Composer: Marco Beltrami

Pianella Studios, Marco Beltrami’s multimillion-dollar recording space north of Malibu, is a little off the beaten path. But, as they say, it’s worth the trip.

Perched on a 20-acre plot high above the Pacific Ocean, it’s a modern-looking two-story, 4,800-sq.-ft. building whose main room can accommodate 35 players (with two isolation booths for as many as five more).

Mixing engineer John Kurlander achieved an especially “live” acoustic in the room with its 28-foot vaulted maple ceilings, bamboo walls and oak floors. A balcony offers room enough for a 12-voice choir.

Beltrami and his co-producer Buck Sanders decided they needed their own studio after their musical breakthrough on “Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada,” where experimentation and processing of sounds was a critical factor.

“It became almost prohibitive (cost-wise) to have to go to a studio, especially on an independent movie,” Beltrami says. “Here, we have designed the space. It’s like a playground. We can do whatever we need to do.”

In addition to the space and time needed for sonic exploration, they can record and mix scores that don’t require large orchestras. Over the past two years, Beltrami’s “Scream 4,” “Soul Surfer,” “The Thing,” “The Woman in Black,” “The Sessions” and “Deadfall” have recorded and/or mixed there; and he has already done pre-records for his upcoming “A Good Day to Die Hard.”

The control room doubles as a dubbing theater, with a large screen and 7.1 surround monitors. Upstairs are a lounge and Beltrami’s writing space.

Under construction on a hill nearby is a guest house where out-of-town guests (maybe a director, producer and their assistants) can stay during the creation of a score.

Pianella is the name of the northern Italian town where Beltrami’s grandfather was born.

Billion-Dollar Composer: Marco Beltrami
Tapping into the keys of success | Beltrami dials it down | A place to experiment and create

More Music

  • Michael Jackson R Kelly

    'Leaving Neverland,' 'Surviving R. Kelly' Composers on How They Scored Sexual Abuse Docs

    How do you put music to child sexual abuse — especially if the accused predators are musical icons? That’s the challenge composers Chad Hobson and Nathan Matthew David faced as they scored HBO’s “Leaving Neverland” and Lifetime’s “Surviving R. Kelly,” respectively. The documentaries are built around interviews with the alleged victims of Michael Jackson (two [...]

  • Camp Flog Gnaw, Day 1

    Lollapalooza Reveals Some of 2019 Lineup: Lil Wayne, Tame Impala, Janelle Monae

    Tired of learning about a festival’s lineup by scrutinizing a tiny jpeg of a poster with miniscule fonts? Apparently Lollapalooza’s organizers are — they’ve come up with the novel approach of revealing part of the lineup via a video in partnership with the Chicago-based animal shelter PAWS, which mixes in clues about 2019 Lollapalooza performers in [...]

  • Cardi B, Lili Reinhart, Keke Palmer,

    Cardi B, Lili Reinhart, Keke Palmer, Julia Stiles Join Strip Club Drama 'Hustlers'

    STXfilms has signed Cardi B, Lili Reinhart, Keke Palmer, Julia Stiles, and Mercedes Ruehl to join strip club drama “Hustlers,” starring Constance Wu and Jennifer Lopez. The film will be directed by Lorene Scafaria (“The Meddler”). Mette Towley and Trace Lysette (“Transparent”) are also in negotiations to join the film. The project, originally set up [...]

  • Peloton Sued for $150 Million for

    Peloton Sued for $150 Million for Using Drake, Lady Gaga Music Without License

    A group of publishers including Downtown Music Publishing, Pulse Music Publishing, ole, peermusic, Ultra Music, Big Deal Music, Reservoir, Round Hill, TRO Essex Music Group and The Royalty Network filed a lawsuit against Peloton for infringement of more than a thousand musical works, according to a statement from the National Music Publishers Association. The plaintiffs are [...]

  • Brandi Carlile,Maren Morris. Brandi Carlile and

    ACM Awards Add Brandi Carlile, Kelly Clarkson, Dan + Shay to Performance Lineup

    Brooks & Dunn had a hit once called “Put a Girl In It,” and that’s just what the Academy of Country Music Awards have done, adding Kelly Clarkson, Brandi Carlile and Ashley McBryde to the lineup of performers for the April 7 telecast on CBS. While they’re at it, they also added Brooks & Dunn, [...]

  • Phil Anselmo New Zealand Concerts Canceled

    Phil Anselmo Concerts in New Zealand Canceled Over ‘White Power’ Remarks

    In the wake of the terrorists attacks on mosques in New Zealand last week, concerts in the country by former Pantera singer Philip Anselmo and his band the Illegals were cancelled due to statements he made in the past about “white power,” according to the New Zealand Herald. Anselmo was filmed giving a Nazi salute [...]

  • New Found Glory

    New Found Glory Reimagines 'This Is Me' for the Warped Tour Crowd (EXCLUSIVE)

    Remember the plot of “Be Kind, Rewind”? Mos Def plays a video store clerk who, after its inventory of videocassettes is erased, sets out with Jack Black to reshoot movies such as “Ghostbusters” and “Rush Hour 2” in the streets of Passaic, N.J. That idea — minus the wacky Fats Waller subplot — resonated with [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content