||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (April 2010)|
|Born||Francis Albert Lai
26 April 1932
Nice, Alpes-Maritimes, France
|Occupation||Film score composer|
While in his twenties, Francis Lai left home and went to Paris where he became part of the lively Montmartre music scene. In 1965 he met filmmaker Claude Lelouch and was hired to help write the score for the film A Man and a Woman. Released in 1966, the film was a major international success, earning a number of Academy Awards, and for the young Francis Lai, a Golden Globe Award nomination for "Best Original Score". This initial success brought more opportunities to work for the film industry both in his native France, where he continued to work with Lelouch on scores to films such as Vivre pour vivre (1967), Un Homme qui me plaît (1969), Le Voyou (1970) and La bonne année (1973), as well as in Great Britain and the United States. He is known for his support of Mireille Mathieu in many compositions and recordings. In 1970, he wrote the score for director René Clément's film, Rider On The Rain ("Le Passager de la Pluie"). It sold over one million copies, and was awarded a gold disc in September 1971.
In 1970 Francis Lai won the Academy Award for Best Music, Original Score and the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score for the film Love Story. In the United States, the soundtrack album went to No. 2 in the Billboard album charts and the film's theme, "Where Do I Begin" was a hit single with lyrics by Carl Sigman for traditional pop singer Andy Williams. The song would also be recorded successfully by Lai himself with a full orchestra and by Henry Mancini and Shirley Bassey. Francis Lai's "Love Story" theme was heard in the 1978 Love Story sequel titled Oliver's Story, although the main score was composed by Lee Holdridge.
His movie scores include films as diverse as Mayerling, Three into Two Won't Go, International Velvet, Édith et Marcel, and Michael Winner films such as I'll Never Forget What's'isname and Hannibal Brooks. Lai has also had success with music written for softcore erotic films like Emmanuelle 2 (1975) and Bilitis (1977). He earned high praise for the latter film's score and its sound-track sold over a million copies throughout the world.
In a career spanning forty years, Lai has also written music for television programs and alone or in collaboration with others has composed music for more than one hundred films and has personally written more than six hundred songs. Notably, he penned the music for the Perry Como hit "I Think of You" (lyric by Rod McKuen).
- Academy Award for Best Music, Original Score for Love Story (1970)
- Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score for Love Story (1970)
- César Award for Best Music Written for a Film for Itinéraire d'un enfant gâté (1988)
- Lifetime Achievement Award at Film Fest Gent (2014)
- Lifetime Achievement Award from the World Soundtrack Academy (2014).
- Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score for A Man and a Woman (1966)
- BAFTA Anthony Asquith Award for Film Music for Vivre pour vivre (1967)
- Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score for Vivre pour vivre (1967)
- Grammy Award for Best Original Score Written for a Motion Picture for Love Story (1970)
- BAFTA Anthony Asquith Award for Film Music for La Bonne année (1973)
- César Award for Best Music Written for a Film for Bilitis (1977)
- César Award for Best Music Written for a Film for Les Uns et les autres (1981)
- César Award for Best Music Written for a Film for Hasards ou coïncidences (1998)
- Francis Lai at the Internet Movie Database
- Official Site
- Vivre pour la Musique - Unofficial Site
- Francis Lai Yahoo Group
- Francis Lai at Epdlp