Michael Giacchino Compares his First Time Directing With His Work as a Composer

Michael Giacchino is renowned for his work as a composer, lending his talent to countless projects across his multi-decade career. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, The Batman, Spider-Man: No Way Home, and Jurassic World: Dominion are just a few films Giacchino scored, and he knows his way around a Hollywood blockbuster.

Unsurprisingly, his first significant directorial outing, Werewolf By Night, was successful with audiences and critics. The Halloween special currently holds a 91% critic and 93% audience rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with MovieWeb calling the project a “Howling good time.” Giacchino recently sat down with DiscussingFilm, and the composer/director shared what it’s like to transition from the music department to the head of the project.


“It’s interesting. Music is all about storytelling. In all the years I’ve been writing music, I’ve been working with these directors who are incredibly talented and helping them tell their stories,” Giacchino says. “When you move from that into directing, it’s not that different, other than the fact that you are dealing with many different departments, as opposed to me just dealing with my department, which is the music.” He continues, “I’m now using those tools that I’ve learned over the years to apply to storytelling. It’s all about storytelling. Filmmaking is the greatest group art form there is and everything you do when you’re making a film is geared toward telling a story. I feel like I’ve had many years of really understanding the process of storytelling.”

Michael Giacchino Learned From Some of the Best Directors

Of course, if you’ve worked on Hollywood blockbusters for the past two decades, you’re bound to work with some great directors. Giacchino recognizes the talent he’s been alongside and claims he’s learned a lot from them. “I’ve been working with people like JJ Abrams, Brad Bird, Matt Reeves and Pete Docter. All of these people that I’ve been so lucky to work with over the years, and also really soaking in every little bit of knowledge I could from every experience I’ve had.”

It wouldn’t be surprising to see Giacchino return to the director’s chair in a future MCU project. He clearly has learned how to direct a successful project, particularly in the classic horror genre. Blade, the upcoming Marvel film starring Mahershala Ali, is currently searching for a new director, and Giacchino seems like he could be a director potentially looked at. If anything, fans should expect to see him return if the characters of Werewolf By Night are expanded any further in the MCU.

Fans can stream Werewolf By Night, which Giacchino also composed, starring Gael GarcÍa Bernal and Laura Donnelly. The Halloween special is available now on Disney+.