Webzen Scores Shore for Game Score

by: Chuck -
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Webzen announced today that they've hired Howard Shore to create the soundtrack for their upcoming MMORPG Sun. Does the name sound familiar? Well it should as Mr. Shore has done the soundtrack for a few Hollywood blockbusters such as "The Aviator", "Dogma", and "Se7en" as well as the upcoming Peter Jackson re-make of "King Kong". It’s always nice to see good talent crossing over to the gaming side.

Oscar® and Grammy® Award-Winning Composer to Create Feature Film-Quality Musical Score for Webzen’s Upcoming MMORPG Title


Los Angeles, CA and Seoul, Korea, (April 25, 2005) – Global online entertainment company, Webzen, Inc. (Nasdaq: Wzen) announced today the company has signed Oscar® and Grammy® award-winning composer Howard Shore to compose the music for the upcoming massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), SUN. Famous for his work on the acclaimed “The Lord of the Rings” films, Shore has also composed musical scores for other blockbuster films including “The Aviator,” “The Gangs of New York,” and “The Silence of the Lambs.” In addition to his work on SUN, Shore is also in post-production with Peter Jackson on the upcoming “King Kong” movie. SUN is scheduled for release in North America on the PC in Q4 2005.

“It is a privilege for Webzen, Inc. to work with such a talented composer like Howard Shore,” said Nam Ju Kim, CEO of Webzen, Inc. “His composing legacy has spanned decades and we’re excited to be a part of his video game debut. We are confident that Howard will leave his signature mark on SUN and help elevate the quality and overall entertainment experience of the game to unprecedented levels in the online entertainment world.”

In composing the signature soundtrack for SUN, Howard Shore turned to The National Philharmonic of Russia (NPR). He is utilizing over 60 of the best orchestra players in Russia, and also using the expertise of renowned conductor Vladimir Spivakov.

SUN is the first title to incorporate console-style game mechanics into a classic MMORPG. With action-packed intensity, stunning graphics, unique battle systems, and a captivating cast of characters, SUN is an epic medieval tale set in a rich world of emperors, armies, magicians and monsters. Under the reign of the Immortal Emperor, Schwarz, the Geist Empire has ruled the Blandis continent for five hundred years. Possessing secret knowledge of the essence of nature known as Ether, Emperor Schwarz converted the precious Ether into dark energy, and used it to conquer the entire continent with his formidable armies. The continued extraction of Ether has impoverished the land, causing the Empire to turn its eyes to the rich lands of neighboring nations to continue its supremacy. With insurrection inevitable, a rebel leader, Ignis, has formed an elite force called the Guidance, who have declared war against the Empire.

Howard Shore has composed the scores to more than 60 films, and has received numerous awards and accolades. Some of these include, Grammy®, Oscar®, Golden Globe, Two Los Angeles Film Critic Awards, The Chicago Film Critics, The Broadcast Film Critics, BFCA Critic’s Choice Award, Five BAFTA nominations in Great Britain, a Gotham Award in New York, two Saturn Awards for Science Fiction, a Genie Award in Canada and four World Soundtrack Awards.

On November 29, 2003, Shore conducted the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in the world premiere of his work, “The Lord of the Rings Symphony: Six Movements for Orchestra and Chorus” in Wellington, New Zealand. Shore is currently touring the symphony, conducting performances all over the world. Each of the symphony's six movements corresponds to a book within J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. The concerts feature over two hundred onstage performers, including a large orchestra, adult and boy choruses and numerous vocal and instrumental soloists. The symphony has been performed in cities including Antwerp, London, Chicago, Tokyo, Philadelphia, Seville, Sydney, Moscow, and many more.

Founded in 2000 and based in Seoul, Korea, Webzen has become a leader in the MMOG market, and has developed some of the world’s top online game and client/server technologies. Webzen’s latest title, MU, has over 56 million users and a half million concurrent users from the Asian market alone. In January of this year, Webzen announced its entry into the U.S. games market with a new subsidiary, Webzen America, based in Los Angeles.

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