Move over Dr Parnassus, a new Imaginarium is coming to town! Symphonic metal maestros Nightwish are currently putting finishing touches to their new album Imaginarium and are also planning a movie of the same name.
Since the band’s conception in 1996, the story-telling imagination of Nightwish has been superbly translated into consciousness by breathtakingly beautiful metal symphony that resonates with innate sensitivity and strength. The band’s music and lyrics lend themselves so perfectly to visual interpretation, which makes the prospect of a Nightwish film TOTALLY EXCITING.
The dark delicacy of Tuomas Holopainen’s imagination is to be brought to life in a style reminiscent of “the surreal worlds of Tim Burton, Neil Gaiman, and Salvador Dali,” without being “too artsy.” In a recent interview, Tuomas explained the film concept as follows:
An old composer on his deathbed returns to his childhood. Old memories slowly return, mingled with the small boy’s world of fantasy and music… I wanted to convey a positive message and a sense of carpe diem. The movie is about the joy of being alive and the beauty of the world.
Metal is a genre that traditionally explores life’s complexities with a brute realism that is appreciated by the few and scorned by the many. Metal undercuts the bullshit with hard hitting music and lyrics that incite listeners to ‘seize the day’ and to embrace the essence of what it means to be alive. But Metal is in fact more diverse than is given credit for, and Nightwish is testament to this fact. The magic of fantasy is embraced by a plethora of metal bands that subconsciously preach ‘carpe diem’ by exposing the inherent beauty that exists in contrast to life’s morose melancholy. The concept behind Imaginarium promises to evoke a sense of life’s loveliness without negating the malignant malevolence that inescapably permeates existence.
The magnificent imagination encapsulated in the ideas driving Imaginarium is to be rendered into visual being by director Stober Harju, his production team and Solar Films, who have teamed up with Nightwish to produce the film. Harju directed the Nightwish video for The Islander and has written the script for Imaginarium. The idea is that the album and the film work independently; the music on the album and in the movie will differ – in the movie, some intros will be edited out and some choruses won’t have vocals because the music has to accommodate the story and the drama. Nightwish will feature in the film playing two or three songs and there are also some support parts and dialogue written for the band members, none of whom will be cast in the main roles.
The pre-production of Imaginarium is currently in full swing. The film will have a running time of around 80 minutes and is due for release, along with the new album, early in 2012 – if everything goes according to plan. Fingers crossed!
To read more about Imaginarium as well as interviews with Tuomas Holopainen, Stobe Harju and producer Markus Selin, visit Nightwish.com.