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‘Lean on Pete’ Composer James Edward Barker to Score Action Thriller ‘The Courier’

A24 | Lean on Pete

James Edward Barker will be composing the score for Zack Adler‘s upcoming action thriller, “The Courier.” The film stars Academy Award winner Gary Oldman (“Darkest Hour”), Dermot Mulroney (“My Best Friend’s Wedding”) and Olga Kurylenko (“Mara”).

Barker has in the past composed scores for “Heist,” “Mara” and Andrew Haigh’s British Independent Spirit Award nominee “Lean on Pete,” for which he won a Best Original Score award at the Les Arcs European Film Festival. Zack Alder’s upcoming film is about a mail courier (Kurylenko) whose daily deliveries are interrupted when she discovers that her latest package is a bomb aimed at killing a witness who is about to testify against a ruthless crime lord. Outside of just composing scores, Barker will be more creatively involved with this project, serving also as co-screenwriter and lead producer.

Lean on Pete 1
Barker composed the score for Andrew Haigh’s drama “Lean on Pete”
Barker expressed enthusiasm for the project in the press release:

“Zack Adler (Director) and I set out to develop the screenplay into a contemporary, relevant and high-octane rollercoaster ride with an array of exciting, versatile characters at its core. It was also amazing to have had the time in pre-production to explore these roles knowing we had the great cast of Olga Kurylenko, Gary Oldman, Amit Shah, Alicia Agneson, William Moseley and Dermot Mulroney. It’s been an incredibly arduous but rewarding journey and Zack and I are very proud to have this as the first feature film on the slate for Rollercoaster Angel.

I’m now getting to the point where I’ll begin work on the score, and I’ve now been trying out various directions for the past few weeks. There’s a fine balance of urgency, tension, desperation and action and so I’m drawing on influences from a wide scope of artists and scores including ‘Daredevil,’ ‘Haunting Of Hill House,’ ‘Dunkirk,’ ‘Glass,’ ‘Wolf Creek,’ ‘Narcos,’ ‘John Wick,’ ‘Assassination Nation’ and ‘Tron:Legacy’… so who knows where I’ll end up but it’s a film with heart and tremendous performances, so I’m already starting ahead of the game!!”

“The Courier” will be distributed through Signature Films and Rollercoaster Angel Productions, which Barker co-founded with director Adler, who is known for his work in the British crime drama realm. The project is currently in post-production.

Do you have thoughts on James Edward Barker taking up the score for Zack Alder’s “The Courier?” Let us know in the comments below!


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Written by Jessica Peña

Jessica Peña studied journalism at Volunteer State Community College before she began writing about film on a personal blog that sprouted from an electronic media course. She is now a film journalist for Awards Circuit, as well as a content editor and writer for the UK-based site JumpCut Online. She also loves the Child's Play/Chucky franchise with no end in sight.


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Matt Passantino

Loved his work on Lean on Pete, one of my top favorites last year


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