Om Thomas Newman
Randy "short people got no reason to live" Newman is a household name. No doubt about it. But did you know that darn near every member of his family has achieved a considerable amount of success in show biz? In fact, over the last 10 to 15 years film score composer Thomas Montgomery Newman has probably worked on more A-list blockbusters than Cousin Randy. A graduate of Yale University, Newman headed for Hollywood in the early '80s. His first scores, including those for Less Than Zero and The Lost Boys, were primarily electronic. He started employing more standard orchestration in the '90s, and with the change came a long string of mega-hits, including but in no way limited to The Shawshank Redemption, American Beauty, Scent of a Woman, Erin Brockovich, Finding Nemo, The Good German and WALL-E. Newman has also plied his trade to television, most notably Six Feet Under and Angels in America. Much of his work post-Shawshank sees the composer filtering traditional orchestral music through the unconventional: world music-inspired percussion, ambient minimalism and so on. To date, Newman has won both Emmys and Grammys, but no Oscars, although he's been nominated eight times.