The Boy Hero... Pt 1

Welp… this is the first entry. It’s where I attempt to set the tone of blog posts to come. I will do my best to write in my own voice so as to not confuse anyone that actually knows me.

This is also the first of , what I hope will be, several posts regarding this film The Boy Hero.

Kyle B. Thompson: co-worker, friend, filmmaker. I had known that he had a film company. We talked about it often. For the few years I’ve known him, we’ve gone back and forth about working together. We threw ideas back and forth. There were potential opportunities that never came through. We finally had a project to make a film together - it was 4 years ago and it was a blast! (more on that in a future post)

It was about this time last year that Kyle mentioned he had an idea he was working on and declared that I would be a part of the project. About 6 months later, I had a copy of the script!

And I read it… and read it. It was a curious thing to have something created by someone I thought I knew pretty well - AND to have it conjure emotions that were completely unexpected. People can surprise you and often in the most wonderful ways. This was no exception.

To tell the truth, I would’ve been on board regardless the subject matter, but the amount of thought and care that went into this film from the very beginning is what made it so special in the end.

After reading the script - AND sending some R-rated texts to Kyle for drawing tears o my eyes, I retired to the “spaceship” to try some ideas. I started building a sonic pallette to draw from.

Tonally, I knew I wanted to draw from the Lydian scale - this scale takes the 4th note and raises it up a half-step. What this does for the ear of the listener is add a touch of brightness. When you hear these sounds, you conjure images of super heroes if the feel of the music is appropriate - marching, stomping, repetitive rhythm. There’s is also a sense of child-like wonder. I tried my best to bring both of those feelings to the score.

It was then that I sat with Kyle in his editing suite in December that I started to get a deeper understanding. This was our first “spotting” session - watching the film together to discuss story themes, musical and stylistic choices, and places for sound or silence.

The  Spaceship

The Spaceship

Even still, nothing had grabbed onto my ear - that is, until I started writing to the trailer. This was a cut that I had in my possession that I could watch over and over again. Overtime I played it, I played to it. Improvising something new to each pass until finally something got lodged. It spoke to me.

This is the first version of the theme which would go on to be Max’s Theme:

(please excuse the quality of the recording - and the chair squeaks!!)

The real-life story arc of how this film came to be is still a bit hard to believe in my own mind and memory; portions of the process I’ll be recounting in future posts.

Thank you for taking the time to scan through my rambling recollections. Hope to see you here again.


Got a question about this post amor anything mentioned in it? Comment below. It might even set me up for a future post.

** Kyle B. Thompson owns and operates Red Flight Pictures.