How much is Hans Zimmer worth?
|Net Worth:||$225 Million|
|Profession:||Film score composer
|Date of Birth:||12 September 1957 (age 65)
|Height:||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
About Hans Zimmer
If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably been exposed at some point to the work of German composer Hans Zimmer even if you weren’t aware of it. The quickest of glances at his credentials will leave you scratching your head at the movies he has scored and even the popular music that is graced with his talents.
Hans was born in 1957 in Frankfurt, West Germany, and as a child developed an aptitude for piano, but a distaste for formal lessons. He attended boarding schools during his primary education, first in Switzerland and as a teen in London, England. It was during this time that he became fascinated with the works of legendary composer, and a personal favorite of mine, Italian composer Ennio Morricone. He would later credit Morricone’s influence as the reason he became a composer himself.
Zimmer also credits his mother’s affinity of music as well as his father’s engineering background as being the catalyst to finding his own niche. In his words, “I grew up modifying the piano, shall we say, which made my mother gasp in horror, and my father would think it was fantastic when I would attach chainsaws and stuff like that to the piano because he thought it was an evolution in technology.”
Zimmer came of age in a unique period in popular music. In the 1970s, a genre known as electronic/synth pop- also called “kraut rock”- had sprung up in various places including Germany. This genre set out to explore new sounds using technology and push the envelope of what music was about. Zimmer was a teen when this new attitude in music coincided with the explosion of punk/alternative/new wave going on in London and the USA. Hans was in perfect position to recognize the seismic shift in attitude toward what was newly possible in music. He formed his own band, called Krakatoa. He appears ever so briefly in the historic video by The Buggles called “Video Killed the Radio Star”, which happened to be the very first selection played by the brand new music television entity known as MTV.
At this point, in the early 1980s, Zimmer seized an opportunity to partner with the well established British composer Stanley Myers, who had already struck gold with his own film compositions, most notably the smash box office hit “The Deer Hunter.” The partnership would serve as the springboard to international fame for Zimmer. His work on films such as “Moonlighting”, “My Beautiful Laundrette” and “The Last Emperor” put him in position for the single biggest opportunity of his career, when he was commissioned to create the soundtrack to the 1988 Barry Levinson movie “Rain Man.”
By the time Zimmer had been offered the job for “Rain Man”, he had already constructed a solid body of work. It was at this point, in the wake of “Rain Man”, when his stock soared to previously unimagined heights. We all know “The Lion King”, right? That’s Zimmer. “Twister” and “Driving Miss Daisy?” Also Hans Zimmer. There’s not enough time or space to give the full discography, but trust me when I say you will shake your head and utter the phrase “That was him, TOO?” if you should dare to peruse his credits. Hans has amassed a fortune in the neighborhood of $200 million. His nominations and awards are downright staggering. Perhaps most significantly, though, has been his knack for topping his own work and creating a new model for the way we judge success. Zimmer as much as any counterpart has also shown the unique ability to excel regardless of styles and genres. He’s done drama, science-fiction, animated stories, superhero films while proving equally adept at war movies, dystopian films and action flicks.
Composers don’t win two Academy Awards, four Grammy’s and a host of other nominations and awards accidentally. Even those who are the benefactors of good fortune or “right time, right place” must be able to see opportunity and have a finger on the pulse of any number of factors within their field of expertise. We’ve established that Zimmer learned how to innovate at an early age. We’ve also learned that he routinely has sought to be cutting edge in his approach. Hans has been very quick to cite his embrace of computers and new technology as a major reason for all his success. But he’s also been known to pursue his art regardless of popularity and approval. In recounting his approach to find the fitting sound for The Joker in “The Dark Knight”, Zimmer stated “I wanted to write something people would truly hate.” It’s Hans’ adherence to the art for art’s sake that has allowed him to remain free from convention and restraint on the art itself. In other words, the primary antagonist in a film must be hated in some fashion, so placing a highly discordant veil over the character’s presence was simply the most obvious route to take, in Zimmer’s estimation. It’s been this unwavering loyalty to the music that has carried Hans to untold success and honors, with fans and critics alike.
Hans Zimmer’s film score career dates back to the 1980s, and he has more than 150 soundtracks to his credit. His keen insight and nuance in combining electronically generated sound with traditional orchestral music has served as the backdrop for some of the biggest movies ever created, and Zimmer shows no sign of stopping. His work in 2021 on part one of the science fiction movie “Dune” earned Zimmer his second Academy award for best original score. His most recent offerings have included the upcoming part two of “Dune” as well as the long awaited sequel “Top Gun:Maverick.”
It seems implausible that one person would be as prolific as Zimmer, but his ability to create merely sets new standards and benchmarks for his profession. In doing so, Zimmer continues to build upon a legacy that is as impressive as it is daunting. Even for those like myself, who can now put a name to the music that’s been so familiar, I look forward to enjoying his back catalog as well as what is next in store!