R.I.P. Marvin Hamlisch

EGOT-winning composer Marvin Hamlisch passed away on Monday at the age of 68. In a career spanning four decades and over 40 movies, Hamlisch scored everything from Woody to Barbra to Bond.

Hamlisch began his career in the movies in the late 1960s, and had an early breakout success with the score for Woody Allen’s 1971 comedy ‘Bananas’. In 1974, he took home three Oscars, two for the Barbra Streisand vehicle ‘The Way We Were’ (Best Original Score and Best Original Song), plus one for adapting Scott Joplin’s ragtime music in ‘The Sting‘. A few years later, he took the musical reigns of the James Bond franchise for ‘The Spy Who Loved Me’. While his disco-infused score for that movie unfortunately dated quickly, his composition of the Carly Simon song “Nobody Does It Better” has aged much more gracefully. It was a big hit and remains one of the most popular of the 007 theme songs.

Later in his career, Hamlisch worked with Streisand again (and was nominated for another Oscar) on ‘The Mirror Has Two Faces’. In all, he was nominated for 12 Oscars, including such notable films as ‘Sophie’s Choice’ and ‘A Chorus Line’ (adapted from his smash Broadway play). Over the years, he also won four Emmys, four Grammys and one Tony. This makes him one of only 11 people to have ever claimed the coveted “EGOT” sweep. In fact, he and composer Richard Rodgers are the only EGOT victors who also have Pulitzer Prizes. (Would that make them PEGOT winners?)

Hamlisch slowed down his film work in the past decade until director Steven Soderbergh dragged him out of retirement to do the jaunty, ’70s-flavored score to his corporate corruption satire ‘The Informant!‘. At the time of his death, the composer was working on Soderbergh’s upcoming Liberace bio-pic, ‘Behind the Candelabra’.

[via The Wrap]

1 comment

  1. EM

    I wonder if his epitaph will read, “Nobody did it better”. Sure, it’s obvious—but sometimes obvious is best.

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