A former Rolling Stone journalist and pop obsessive, few filmmakers have ever used popular music quite as effectively and prominently as writer/director Cameron Crowe. Films like “Say Anything,” “Singles,” “Jerry Maguire” and “Almost Famous” became as widely known for their carefully curated soundtracks as for the films themselves, and as the director gears up to shoot his latest effort, "We Bought a Zoo" early in the new year, it looks like we can expect another batch of songs to carry us through the film.
Speaking with MTV, Matt Damon revealed, "When [Cameron Crowe] gave me the screenplay, it came with music." Damon promptly put the music on his iPod, and when pressed just what music specifically was featured, the actor ventured "a lot of Eddie Vedder, a lot of Neil Young" but wouldn't say anything more than that.
The musical selections do make seem to make a bit of sense for the film that will deal with some heavy themes. The dramedy is based on the memoir by Benjamin Mee with a script from “The Devil Wears Prada” writer Aline Brosh McKenna, which follows Mee (Damon) as a single father who attempts to fulfill his late wife’s wish of moving their family to the titular animal sanctuary. Damon is joined by Scarlett Johansson as love interest Kelly; Thomas Haden Church as his brother, Elle Fanning and Patrick Fugit as other zoo employees, and Angus MacFadyen as the the head zookeeper.
Vedder and Young seem to fit the bill for a story about a family dealing with the aftermath of the mother's death. Of course, whether or not they end up in the final soundtrack remains to be seen but it's a good indication of the direction the music in the film may take. We're definitely curious to see what other songs will eventually make their way on screen but we won't have to wait long. This film will move quickly as it's already slotted to hit theaters on December 23rd, 2011.