Congratulations are once again in order for Icelandic composer Hildur Guðnadóttir, who won the Academy Award for Best Original Score for Joker at the Oscars this weekend. This win rounds out an incredibly successful awards season for Hildur, where she won a Golden Globe and Critic’s Choice Award for her work on Joker, in addition to winning Grammy and Emmy awards for her music composition on Chernobyl.
Hildur’s win at the Academy Awards makes her the first female Oscar score winner in 23 years. The category has remained traditionally male-dominated – with Hildur becoming the fourth woman to win the honor. In her acceptance speech, the Iceland-born composer shared an inspiring call to action for women in the industry, saying, “To the girls, to the women, to the mothers, to the daughters, who hear the music bubbling within, please speak up. We need to hear your voices.”
In the Best Original Score category, Guðnadóttir was up against four veteran composers, three of whom had already won an Academy Award. What truly set Hildur apart was the Joker director’s unique approach to bring the composer in before shooting the film to provide an original score. Solely after reading the script, Hildur composed a theme for Joaquin Phoenix’s titular character that was used on set while filming crucial scenes.
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