Access Type

Open Access Dissertation

Date of Award

January 2013

Degree Type


Degree Name




First Advisor

Jackie Byars


The purpose of this dissertation is to analyze the different types of music featured in the films of contemporary American film director Wes Anderson utilizing Claudia Gorbman's concepts of auteur music and auteur melomane. This analysis establishes the music in Anderson's films as auteur music and Anderson himself as an auteur melomane - a director with a passion for music. To establish Anderson as a melomane, it is important to look not only at the different types of music found in his films but also the different ways that the music is used within the films and his collaboration with composer Mark Mothersbaugh and music supervisor Randall Poster. Anderson's films feature several different ways that music is used, but there are three specific uses that contribute to his overall authorial signature: the songs associated with montage sequences, the songs and original score used to accompany scenes featuring slow-motion sequences, and finally the songs that emanate from musical devices. The music used in Anderson's films is a significant part of his overall authorial signature, and this is established by detailing the specific ways that the music is used in his first five feature-length films and two of his short films.