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John Debney

John Debney (born in Glendale, California, 18 August 1956) is an award-winning American film composer, who received an Academy Award nomination for his score for Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ.


The son of Disney Studios producer Louis Debney ("Zorro," "The Mickey Mouse Club"), he grew up in nearby Glendale, California, where he began guitar lessons at age six and played in rock bands in college. Debney earned his B.A. degree in Music Composition from the California Institute of Arts (1979). After college, Debney's professional entry into the business came from television composing legend Mike Post ("Magnum P.I.," "The Rockford Files," "Law and Order"). Debney furthered his hands-on training by working with Hanna-Barbera composer Hoyt Curtin. After this, Debney went on to score television projects as diverse as Star Trek: The Next Generation A Pup Named Scooby-Doo and seaQuest DSV for which he won an Emmy for Best Main Title. In the early 1990s, Debney began to score films for indie projects. In 1993, he secured his first studio feature, the Disney comedy Hocus Pocus starring Bette Midler.

Debney has since gone on to have a very prolific career composing scores for many highly successful films including: The Passion of the Christ, Bruce Almighty, Elf, Sin City, Chicken Little, Liar Liar, The Scorpion King, and The Princess Diaries.



Hotel For Dogs

They Came From Upstairs

Old Dogs


The Stoning of Soraya M.

The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (Additional Music)

My Best Friend's Girl

Meet Dave

Swing Vote


Lair (video game)

Big Stan (themes)

Spider-Man 3 (Additional music)

Evan Almighty

Georgia Rule


Everyone's Hero



The Ant Bully


Keeping Up with the Steins

Cheaper by the Dozen 2


Chicken Little

Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story

Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo (theme)

The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl 3-D (co-composer)


Sin City (co-composer)

The Pacifier


Christmas with the Kranks

The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement

Raising Helen

The Whole Ten Yards

Spider-Man 2 (Additional music)

The Passion of the Christ *(2005 Academy Award Nomination)

Welcome to Mooseport



Bruce Almighty


The Hot Chick


The Tuxedo

Spy Kids 2: Island of Lost Dreams (co-composer)

The Scorpion King


Snow Dogs


Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius

The Princess Diaries

Cats & Dogs


Spy Kids

See Spot Run


The Emperor's New Groove

The Replacements

Michael Jordan to the Max


End of Days (1999)

The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland (1999)

Dick (1999)

Inspector Gadget (1999)

Lost & Found (1999/I)

My Favorite Martian (1999)

I'll Be Home for Christmas (1998)

Paulie (1998)

I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)

Liar Liar (1997)

The Relic (1997)

Justice League of America (1997)

Doctor Who (1996) TV movie

The Cape (1996) TV Series (unknown episodes) *(2 Emmy Nominations and 1 Emmy win)

Cutthroat Island (1995)

Sudden Death (1995)

In Pursuit of Honor (1995) (TV) SeaQuest DSV TV Series *(1 Emmy win)

Houseguest (1995)

Little Giants (1994) White Fang 2: Myth of the White Wolf (1994)

Gunmen (1994)

seaQuest DSV (1993)

The Halloween Tree (film) (1993)

Jetsons: The Movie (1990)

The Young Riders (1989) TV Series (unknown episodes) *(1 Emmy win)


Emmy Awards/Nominations:

1990: Nominated: Outstanding Achievement in Main Title Theme Music for: "The Young Riders" (1989)

1991: Won: Outstanding Achievement in Music Composition for a Series (Dramatic Underscore) for: "The Young Riders" (1989)

1994: Won: Outstanding Individual Achievement in Main Title Theme Music for: "SeaQuest DSV" (1993)

1997: Won: Outstanding Music Composition for a Series (Dramatic Underscore) for: "The Cape" (1996)

Nominated: Outstanding Main Title Theme Music for: "The Cape" (1996)

Academy Awards/Nominations:

2005: Nominated: Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures, Original Score for: "The Passion of the Christ" (2004)

Annie Awards/Nominations:

2001: Nominated: Outstanding Individual Achievement for Music Score an Animated Feature Production for: The Emperor's New Groove (2000)

2007: Nominated : Best Music in an Animated Feature Production for: The Ant Bully (2006)

External links

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