Why ‘The Omen’s’ Oscar Win for Best Original Score Shocked Its Composer

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Can you hear the chanting chorus yet? In 1976, The Omen terrified theaters full of innocent, God-fearing Americans nationwide. A year later, the film took home a well deserved Academy Award for its haunting original score—because composer Jerry Goldsmith never comes to play.

Director Richard Donner was wise to bring in Goldsmith to create The Omen’s signature sound, even in spite of the film’s meager budget. The Planet of the Apes composer was coming off a hot streak at the time, having scored Papillion, Chinatown, and The Wind and the Lion in the three preceding years (1973 through 1975).

At the same time, 17 Oscar nominations and no wins seem to have taken a toll on Goldsmith, who reportedly planned to skip 1977’s ceremony for fear he couldn’t handle any further rejection. The Omen producers Mace Neufield and Harvey Bernhard persuaded him to go anyway, convinced that this would be the nomination he would finally win.

Read more at The Daily Beast.