We probably don’t have to tell you that we’re huge fans of Jon Brion. The acclaimed songwriter, Largo showman, music producer and composer has been behind the boards for artists as varied as Kanye West, Elliott Smith, Fiona Apple, Of Montreal and of course, wrote some amazing scores for films like “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind,” “Punch Drunk Love,” “Synecdoche, New York” and “I Heart Huckabees,” but surprisingly, his instantly recognizable style — which falls somewhere between Tin Pan Alley and “Pet Sounds” — has never been used for an animated film. Until now.
Focus Features has announced the two-time Grammy nominated Brion has been brought on to tune up the forthcoming stop-motion animated film, “ParaNorman.” Directed by Chris Butler and Sam Fell making their feature debut, the story centers on a small town that comes under siege by zombies, ghosts and witches, and the misunderstood local boy whose ability to speak to the dead might just save the day. The impressive voice talent includes Kodi Smit-McPhee, Casey Affleck, Tempestt Bledsoe (Vanessa!), Jeff Garlin, John Goodman, Bernard Hill, Anna Kendrick, Leslie Mann, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Tucker Albrizzi, Alex Borstein, Jodelle Ferland and Elaine Stritch.
We can take or leave the premise of the film as it falls rather anonymously into one of the numerous supernatural movies that are in the works, but with Brion providing the music, we’ll be there. It sounds like a great fit for the multi-talented songwriter/musician/arranger and we’re eager to see what he brings to genre he’s never really dabbled in before. The film will hit theaters in 3D on August 17, 2012 opposite “Expendables 2,” but we already know which one we’ll be buying tickets for.