Producers of “The Simpsons” are vowing that composer Alf Clausen will still play a role in the long-running Fox animated series despite having informed Clausen this week that he had been fired after 27 years.
“We tremendously value Alf Clausen’s contributions to ‘The Simpsons’ and he will continue to have an ongoing role in the show. We remain committed to the finest in music for ‘The Simpsons,’ absolutely including orchestral,” read a statement issued Thursday that was attributed to “the producers of ‘The Simpsons.’ ” “This is the part where we would make a joke but neither Alf’s work nor the music of ‘The Simpsons’ is treated as anything but seriously by us.”
Clausen’s unceremonious dismissal sparked outrage in Hollywood’s music and production circles on Wednesday after Variety broke the news. Clausen declined to comment on the statement. Nor were Fox reps available to elaborate on the reversal of Clausen’s status on the show, which hails from the 20th Century Fox TV unit.
Under Clausen’s baton, “The Simpsons” has long been one of only a handful of primetime TV series to still engage a live orchestra for recording the score of each episode. With Clausen’s ouster, the expectation was that the show would shift to a less expensive means of scoring.
“The Simpsons” is set to begin its 29th season on Oct. 1. Clausen’s last score for the show was featured in the season 28 finale that aired in May.
Reaction from “Simpsons” fans to Clausen’s firing was swift and angry on Wednesday. Here’s a sampling:
I normally don't get emotional about business decisions like this, but HOLY HELL, end of a true dynastyhttps://t.co/rggo4m4tx2
— Austin Wintory (@awintory) August 30, 2017
This fucking stinks. 28 series. Not one cue re-used. 50 people (orchestra of 35 + others) given a week's notice.https://t.co/Ovvy18KuAI
— Jason Hazeley (@JasonHazeley) August 30, 2017