Van Morrison's company Exile Productions has announced an exclusive licence with EMI Music for worldwide release of a new compilation entitled 'Van Morrison At The Movies,' coinciding with an Oscar week award celebrating Van's compositions as used in film.
The US -- Ireland Alliance will honour Van Morrison for his compositions as used in the movies at a special event staged in Los Angeles on February 22. Held at the Wilshire Ebell, the event will feature Oscar-winning actor Al Pacino presenting the award, which highlights the depth and breadth of Van's compositions, including such classics such as Moondance, Brown-Eyed Girl, Have I Told You Lately, Days Like This, Bright Side Of the Road, Gloria, and many more. Van will play a short musical set at the event, which is hosted by actress Roma Downey. Films using Van Morrison's music include Thelma & Louise, The King Of Comedy, An Officer And A Gentleman, Bridget Jones' Diary, Born On The Fourth Of July, among others, while directors of the calibre of Martin Scorsese, James L. Brooks, Oliver Stone, Taylor Hackford, Lawrence Kasdan and John Landis have queued up to request his songs for inclusion in their work.
To coincide with this honour, EMI Music will release a new compilation, 'Van Morrison At The Movies,' the previous week. Containing 18 of his best-known songs as used in film, plus his version of Pink Floyd's 'Comfortably Numb' as featured in 'The Departed,' the album also includes 'Gloria' and 'Baby Please Don't Go' from his days with Them, plus collaborations with The Band on 'Caravan' (from 'The Last Waltz') and The Chieftains on 'Irish Heartbeat' from Mark Joffe's 'The Matchmaker.'
The Los Angeles event is only the second in the history of the US-Ireland Alliance. Entitled "Oscar Wilde: Honouring Irish Writing in Film," it serves as a pre-Academy Awards party, and other honourees are screenwriter William Monahan and writer/director Terry George. The U.S.-Ireland Alliance is a non-profit organization created to foster ties between the U.S. and Ireland, and they have lined up sponsorship for the event from the Irish Film Board, Walt Disney Studios and Culture Ireland.
Trina Vargo, founder and president of the Alliance, said the event was created to "bring together leaders in the Irish film community with their Hollywood counterparts at a fun, casual Irish party." The US Ireland Alliance website is at www.us-irelandalliance.org
Tony Wadsworth, Chairman and CEO of EMI Music, UK & Ireland, said, "This award is fully deserving for a writer and creator of Van Morrison's calibre. EMI is thrilled to be involved in this new compilation, which highlights Van's immeasurable talent and his consistent ability to write songs that have moved generations of music lovers. We hope it will be the start of a long-term association with Van and his music."