Metallica has confirmed that an orchestral version of their classic track “Nothing Else Matters” is in the works for Disney’s upcoming Jungle Cruise film.
In a new interview with Collider, Lars Ulrich talked about how the collaboration came to be, saying:
“It really goes back to Sean Bailey, who is a lifelong rock fan, and is just all-around one of the greatest, most friendly, generous, warm, and embracing people you’ll find in the music business. I think he’s always been a Metallica fan, and we’ve gotten to know each other well. My wife and I are big Disney fans, so there’s a great friendship there, and he’s always looked for the right match where there was a way that Metallica could contribute to some project of theirs. This was the right fit, with Sean leading the calvary, and with James Newton Howard and his track record, and what he’s done.”
Ulrich is most excited to work with Howard, who has won eight Academy Awards for his work on films such as ‘The Fugitive,’ ‘Michael Clayton’ and ‘The Village.’ “James Newton Howard, the man, the myth, the absolute legend,” he enthused. “Considering what’s he’s done, it’s an absolute honor to have done this with him, and we’re excited for the world to hear it.
“It’s kind of an interesting morph,” relates Ulrich about working on someone else’s version of their song. “It’s a very unusual morph in that it’s kind of his arrangement of ‘Nothing Else Matters’ that we’re playing. We wrote the song, but he took the song and rearranged it to fit something specific in the film — and obviously, I’m not going to give any of that away — but we then kind of took on his version of it. I think that’s all that should be said.”
It’s said that “Nothing Else Matters” will soundtrack two key components of the film. Walt Disney Studios president of music and soundtracks Mitchell Leib told Entertainment Outlet in June that the song plays for approximately seven minutes and helps set up the film’s backstory.
“I came up with the idea of, let’s have some fun, and why don’t we take your tracks up to Metallica’s studio in San Francisco,” said Leib at the time about how the collaboration came about. “Why don’t we have Lars do the drum tracks, and James Hetfield do some of the guitars, and have Rob [Trujillo]… and so I’m dealing with Metallica right now, and as well as helping him [Lars] become an Academy member.”
Metallica are no strangers to reworking their music for an orchestra. The band released their latest live album, S&M2, with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra last month, putting to tape their S&M 20th anniversary shows from September 2019.
Jungle Cruise is set to hit theaters July 30, 2021. The film, based on the classic Disney attraction, stars Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Emily Blunt and is being directed by Jaume Collet-Serra. You can watch a trailer for the film here.