A Brief History of Trent Reznor and David Fincher Collaboration

SevenFincher
Posted on 05/31/2011 at 5:45 PM

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The Popdust Files: david fincher, list, nine inch nails, trent reznor

When it comes to crafting grimy, caustic and uncomfortably beautiful sorts of landscapes in either the film or music mediums, two names immediately come to mind as the ultimate auteurs: Trent Reznor and David Fincher. As the lead singer and creative force behind Nine Inch Nails, Reznor’s immaculately produced industrial pop-metal made him one of the definitive musicians of the last twenty-plus years of alternative rock, while a series of suspenseful, visually detailed and dark-bordering-on-apocalyptic thrillers in the second half of the 90s made Fincher the go-to director for thinking-man’s popcorn flicks. Getting the two together is obviously a match made in heaven existential purgatory, and over the years, collaboration between Fincher and Reznor has helped elevate the games of both artists.

With the trailer for Fincher’s highly anticipated adaptation of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo recently leaking, heavily featuring Reznor’s music therein, it seems a good time to look back on how the relationship between the two has evolved over the years—starting with indirect collaboration, and eventually turning into a legitimate artistic partnership that has brought unforeseen accolades and attention to both.

SE7EN (1995). The first time that Fincher’s visuals meshed with Reznor’s music was in the credits to Fincher’s breakout film, the cold-world thriller Se7en. Previously a music video director by trade, having helmed legendary clips for such pop megastars as Janet Jackson, George Michael and Paula Abdul, Fincher and designer Kyle Cooper approached the movie’s credit sequence like something that could air on MTV—although probably not before 10:00 PM. The “Precursor” remix to Nine Inch Nails’ signature hit “Closer” plays over a choppy montage of the movie’s antagonist John Doe assembling his notebook collages, writing his manifestos and scraping off his fingertips, while the eerie, jittery, mechanical remix throbs in the background. It’s an incredibly tense and unsettling tone-setter, and IFC.com recently named it the third greatest credit sequence of all-time, giving it its due for “reviving the great tradition of elaborate credits sequences.”

FIGHT CLUB (1999). Reznor was never directly involved with any part of Fincher’s influential cult hit Fight Club, but he did play a large part in informing the movie’s source material, the original novel by Chuck Palahniuk. The author cited NIN’s 1994 album The Downward Spiral as a huge influence on the book, especially album closer “Hurt,” with its famous opening lyric, “I hurt myself today / To see if I still feel.” “I could recite every lyric from that song,” Palahniuk has said. “Because I listened to it for days on end while I was writing Fight Club.” What’s more, Palahniuk has claimed that Reznor told him that he wished he could have done the score for the movie, but was too busy—presumably with the recording of third album The Fragile, which came out the same year. Finally, rumors surfaced a couple years ago about Fincher’s interest in turning Fight Club into a Broadway musical—with You Know Who developing the music, natch.

“ONLY” (2005). Once his film career took off in the mid-90s, Fincher mostly turned his back on his music-video roots, only returning to the medium sporadically in the last 15 years. To date, his last music video is for the second single off Nine Inch Nails’ With Teeth album, “Only.” Fincher’s CGI-reliant clip for the song featured a rendering of Reznor singing the song through a Pin Art toy sitting on an office desk, as other items on the desk (a cup of coffee, a perpetual-motion ball machine) begin to shake violently and Pin Art Trent tries to to force his way out. While in a brighter, more commonplace setting than the majority of Reznor-Fincher projects, the requisite creepiness is definitely there, though imbued with a technological playfulness not often seen from either artist. The video was a success, earning heavy rotation on VH1 and MTV and propelling the song to #1 on the Modern Rock charts.

THE SOCIAL NETWORK (2010). Obviously the most high-profile collaboration between Reznor and Fincher to date came in their work on the hugely successful retelling of the controversial story of Facebook’s inception, The Social Network. Along with collaborator Atticus Ross, Reznor composed his first-ever original score for Fincher’s movie, eschewing the usual heaviness and aggression of his work with Nine Inch Nails for something subtler and moodier, though with the same ornate production and sense of underlying unease that characterizes most of the band’s work. The music both perfectly underscored the film’s ceaseless tension in between its main characters, and helped give a much-needed drive to many of the montage sequences, particularly the type of hacking-focused ones that have proven historically difficult for filmmakers to make seem exciting over the years. Both Reznor and Fincher received Oscar nominations for their work, with Reznor even becoming one of the Academy’s all-time most unlikely winners.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLNW-WGLldI

THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO (2011). Though Fincher’s adaptation of Stieg Larsson’s smash hit novel The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, with Reznor again doing the score, will not see release until December, we got our first taste of the duo’s latest collaboration in the form of the movie’s recently leaked trailer. The two-minute clip features a rapid-fire montage of second-long images from the movie, delivered completely devoid of context, and all sent to Reznor’s rendition of Led Zeppelin’s classic “Immigrant Song,” featuring the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Karen O. on vocals. The gritty energy of the briskly edited sequence, layered over Reznor’s death-disco, actually recalls the duo’s first work together in the Se7en credits—and in our opinion, certainly bodes quite well for the eventual full-length movie.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kOFGI0p6SM&feature=player_embedded

Compass Bank moving up locally compassbankonlinenow.net compass bank online

The Gazette (Colorado Springs, CO) June 13, 2010 | WAYNE HEILMAN Compass Bank was a small player in the Colorado Springs banking industry until last August, when it acquired the failed Guaranty Bank in Austin, Texas, the primary lender to locally based homebuilding and development giant Classic Cos.

The Birmingham, Ala.-based Compass Bank ranks among the nation’s 15 largest banks with $46.5?billion in deposits, but very little of that is kept in its two Colorado Springs branches – just $8.7′million as of June 30 of last year, the latest information available.

After acquiring the failed savings and loan from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., Compass took over about $110 million in credit lines Guaranty extended to Classic over the previous two years.

Compass is owned by Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria, a Spanish bank that is the world’s seventh-largest financial institution with $785 billion in assets and 7,787 branches in 32 countries. BBVA Compass Bank is headed by Manuel “Manolo? S?chez, who joined BBVA in 1990 and came to the United States in 1999 after he was named director and senior vice president of global corporate banking for its New York bank. He went to BBVA’s Mexico City bank in 2002 as chief risk officer before returning to the U.S. three years later to head the newly acquired Laredo National Bank. He become president and CEO of Compass in 2008.

S?chez was in Colorado Springs last month to host an economic address and luncheon for local bank customers and business leaders at the Cheyenne Mountain Resort. He discussed the bank’s local expansion plans and other subjects in an interview.

Question: What are BBVA’s plans to expand in the Colorado Springs area?

Answer: This is a market we have liked for a while. This county is high on our radar because of its demographics and its diversified work force, resilient economy and military presence. We see this as an interesting community.

While we have only two branches, we have a strong team and we funded more than $100 million in loans last year out of the $9.2 billion we made nationally. We did our part of help the economy grow.

Colorado is an environment we like and we hope there will opportunities here to grow.

We have individuals who are looking at making a case for expansion in this state. We held our national sales conference in Colorado Springs three years ago with 400 bankers from Florida to Arizona. We have a very strong local customer base and would like to have more branches here; it is just a matter of what is the best strategy for expansion.

Q: Has your parent company in Spain felt any fallout from the financial crisis in Europe?

A: Our European ownership has brought us strength and stability. We are one of only two banks of our size in the world that didn’t take money from any government. Our bank is rated AA by the rating agencies and is a well-diversified institution – Spain makes up only one-third of our bottom line. We are not dependent on one part of the world economically.

We see all of the headlines about Spain, but its debt is still rated AAA by two of the three rating agencies. Spain’s debt is 50 percent of its gross domestic product, while the U.S. debt is 80 percent of its gross economic product.

There are many strong fundamentals about the Spanish economy, which boomed in recent years for the same reason Florida did – the migration of retirees – and it will take longer to recover as a result.

We are a U.S. bank under U.S. regulation; we don’t do business with our Spanish bank.

Q: What is the bank’s long-term growth strategy?

A: We want to become a household name in banking. We have invested $13 billion in six acquisitions in the past five years.

We deliver a business model that is customer-centric because we want to be the best universal bank for our clients as we are competing with the largest banks in the country. We are the fourth- largest bank in Texas, the fifth-largest bank in Arizona and the third-largest bank in Alabama. We operate in 90 metropolitan areas with 1,500 competitors in those markets. website compass bank online

Q: What is your opinion of the financial reform legislation now being debated in Congress? (The Senate and House have approved versions, and a compromise must still be hammered out in a conference committee.) A: It is still a work in progress. We are in favor of legislation that protects consumers from unfair practices, promotes long-term economic growth because the financial system helps the economy run, keeps the financial system safe and regulation that promotes healthy business growth.

We didn’t raise our credit card interest rates ahead of the effective date of the Credit Card Act as to not defeat the purpose of the new law. We instead launched our “clear points? card – you get what you see in plain vanilla credit card. We also are trying to be clear about overdraft fees – customers have to opt in if you want the bank to pay your check when you don’t have enough funds in the account.

Q: Are you concerned the European debt crisis will spread to the U.S. and the rest of the world?

A: We believe the U.S. economy will come out of the recession on stronger footing. These (latest problems) are hiccups. Europe has lagged behind the rest of the world in implementing structural reforms, but that is harder to do with 25 countries involved.

Consumer confidence is growing. There was a breakdown in trust when Lehman Brothers went bankrupt; when something like that comes into the financial markets, you see overreaction like this. The $1 trillion European bailout fund for Greece should put investors more at ease.

Questions and answers have been edited for brevity and clarity.” Contact the writer at 636-0234.

WAYNE HEILMAN

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