BURBANK, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Walt Disney Records will release the soundtrack for the new part animated, part live-action, movie musical, Enchanted, on November 20, 2007. The recording features songs by Academy Award Winners Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz with original score by Menken. Amy Adams and James Marsden (Princess Giselle and Prince Edward in the film) perform four tracks on the CD. Recording artists Carrie Underwood and Jon McLaughlin each perform a song.
A classic Disney fairytale collides with modern-day New York City in a story about a fairytale princess (Amy Adams) from the past who is thrust into present-day by an evil queen (Susan Sarandon). Soon after her arrival, Princess Giselle begins to change her views on life and love after meeting a handsome lawyer (Patrick Dempsey). Can a storybook view of romance survive in the real world?
Enchanted is in many ways an homage to classic Disney films, beginning as an animated tale then turns into a live-action musical. Director Kevin Lima turned to the team of Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz (Pocahontas, The Hunchback of Notre Dame) to create the musical journey for Princess Giselle.
After graduating from New York University, Menken began his career writing advertising jingles, accompanying ballet classes, and working as a musical director. He met Howard Ashman and began collaborating on several productions for the WPA Theater, ultimately achieving widespread acclaim with Little Shop of Horrors. The musical was later turned into a film, which earned Menken his first Academy Award nomination.
The success of Little Shop of Horrors led Menken to Walt Disney Studios, for whom he has shared some of his greatest accomplishments. His first two Oscars, for best original score and best song ("Under the Sea", featuring lyrics by Ashman) would come three years later, for his work on Disney's The Little Mermaid. The film, like Beauty and the Beast is being turned into a live action musical debuting on Broadway later this year. Beauty and the Beast also featured music by Menken and lyrics by Ashman and earned Menkin two more Academy Awards. To date, Menken has earned 8 Oscars and 15 nominations.
For Enchanted, Menken turned to Stephen Schwartz, his collaborator on Pocahontas and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Stephen Schwartz shares an Oscar with Menken for Pocahontas. He has been nominated for numerous Tony Awards for such classic musicals as Wicked, Godspell, and Pippin.
Together they would draw on their film and musical theater expertise for Enchanted. "The biggest problem with doing live-action musicals is justifying why the characters are suddenly bursting into song in the middle of very real sets and very real situations," says Schwartz. The concept of Enchanted does so in a way that is true to the characters.
"We're really trying to take you back to the Snow White or Cinderella era, pre-Belle, pre-Pinocchio, back to the earliest days of animation," Menken describes. This influence is evident in "Happy Working Song", which shows Giselle utilizing her animal-charming abilities to help straighten out a messy apartment or "True Love's Kiss", a duet between Amy Adams and James Marsden that opens with a classic Disney-style fanfare. Singer/songwriter Jon McLaughlin performs the song "So Close," offering an outer voice that mirrors Giselle's inner emotional journey.
Multi-platinum recording artist Carrie Underwood performs the final song "Ever Ever After," produced by Mark Bright. Says Underwood, "It's actually one of the more difficult songs I've sung, but it's really cute and it's really fun, and it fits so well with the movie." The song also gave Underwood the opportunity to team up again with video director Roman White, who has directed 6 of her videos including "Before He Cheats," "Jesus Take the Wheel," and current hit "So Small."
Though Underwood has been responsible for many memorable songs since winning American Idol, she acknowledges that there is something about recording a song for a Disney film that truly makes you timeless. She describes, "It's really amazing to think that someday kids will know all the words to this song - just like I know the words to a lot of other Disney songs that have become classics."
Walt Disney Pictures presents Enchanted in theaters on November 21, 2007. The Enchanted Original Soundtrack will be available November 20, 2007 at a suggested price of $18.98 wherever music is sold. All Walt Disney Records audio products also can be ordered by visiting DisneyRecords.com.