Norwegian songwriter Sondre Lerche never really thought about working on a movie soundtrack. It wasn’t until Dan in Real Life director Peter Hedges approached him for it that it seemed like a legit way to spend time.
“Rumor has it he listened to a bunch of stuff and he heard a couple of my records that he liked,” he told OK! “As it turns out his therapist is in the same building as my apartment and he came by one day. My wife made some elderberry tea and he explained the film and why he wanted me to compose. I was thrilled! He was such an enthusiastic guy. I knew I had to be a part of this.”
The movie focuses on Dan (Steve Carell), an advice columnist who is dealing with the pressures of family and finding love after his wife dies. On the soundtrack, Sondre tried to imitate the emotions of the movie in his work as the film’s composer. “I focused on the idea of really believing in love and good things, but there’s the sadness to Dan’s character and a vulnerability that maybe some of the instruments express. Peter was very… he wanted things to sound like someone picked up an instrument and played.”
Composing the soundtrack also gave Sondre the chance to chill on the set of the movie, where he got to hang out with funnyman Steve. “He was great. I’m a huge Steve Carell fan. He has a scene where he plays guitar that I helped rehearse with him. I love The Office and that was a big kick. He’s very laid-back and a sweet guy. He’s sort of how you’d expect him to be. He does a great job in the film,” he said.
“It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. As first experiences go in terms of scoring a Hollywood production, it was unique. He was really great in the way he gets everyone involved. His enthusiasm really made him think I could do this. It was a fantastic experience,” he said. So much so that Sondre would love to try it again. So if Michel Gondry, Wes Anderson or David O. Russell are reading this, please give Sondre a call!
Dan in Real Life opens this weekend. The soundtrack in stores now.