Baltimore musician to score Francis Ford Coppola film

Francis Ford Coppola must be listening to Baltimore electronic music at his California vineyard.

The Academy Award-winning filmmaker of the "Godfather" movies tapped local musician Dan Deacon to score his upcoming movie, "Twixt Now and Sunrise," which stars Val Kilmer and Elle Fanning.

Deacon, who was classically trained at the State University of New York at Purchase, is now better known for founding the artists' collective Wham City in Baltimore and making hyperkinetic dance music. He said he was attracted to Coppola's project because it would allow him to return to his roots.

"I've been wanting to go back to music that is more dissonant, like what I was doing in college," he said. "But I didn't want to disenfranchise my pop audience, so this is a good platform to show a different side of my music."

Coppola, who has been moving away from blockbusters into more esoteric work, first heard Deacon on National Public Radio last year. He said in an interview that he was drawn to Deacon's unconventional aesthetic.

"I was fascinated with his intelligence, and also with his sense of adventure," he said.

But Coppola, whose father was a composer, said it was Deacon's background in composition that made him a fit for the film.

An iconoclastic artist himself, Deacon said he also liked the diversity of Coppola's work, especially films like "The Outsiders" and the recent indie movie "Youth Without Youth."

"I like how separated he is from mainstream Hollywood," Deacon said.

The two spent time at Coppola's vineyard in Napa Valley early last year, and in August agreed to work together on the new film, which Coppola described as a Gothic romance inspired by another Baltimorean, Edgar Allan Poe.

Though Deacon read the screenplay, he hasn't seen the finished film yet. It still has another week of shooting, Coppola said.

The two will meet in February to brainstorm and prepare for the film's Halloween release. Coppola said he wants the score to have orchestral, possible even atonal elements, but also the kind of electronic music Deacon's most known for. The movie does not yet have a distributor, Coppola said.

This will be Deacon's first score but not his first foray into classical music. He wrote an orchestral piece that will be performed next month by the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony in Ontario, Canada.

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