Jerry Goldsmith talks The Sand Pebbles (1966)

Jerry Goldsmith talks The Sand Pebbles (1966) Part 1

Jerry Goldsmith talks The Sand Pebbles (1966) Part 2

Jerry Goldsmith talks The Sand Pebbles (1966) Part 3

Jerry Goldsmith talks The Sand Pebbles (1966) Part 4

Video interviews of Jerry Goldsmith (who died in 2004) are few and far between, so when I saw that he gave an interview in 1989 for The Sand Pebbles (released in 1966), I knew I had to share it with you.=


The Sand Pebbles was directed by Robert Wise and stars Steve McQueen, Richard Attenborough and Richard Crenna, and tells the story of the (fictional) gunboat USS San Pablo as it patrols the rivers in 1920s China. The people refer to the boat as “The Sand Pebble” and its crew as “Sand Pebbles” (hence the name of the film).


The plot follows Holman (McQueen), a machinist’s mate who joins the San Pablo. After an offscreen incident, tensions between the boat, the crew, and the Chinese grow tenser than ever. The boat is ordered to leave the river and return to the coast, but the commander disobeys in order to rescue two American missionaries, who will surely be killed by the Communists if they are not taken away.


It’s been a long time since I saw this movie, but I remember the ending (I won’t tell you how it ends, you’ll have to see for yourself), had me very upset (but in a good way). Enjoy this interview from one of the masters of film music.

See also:

Jerry Goldsmith talks Chinatown (1974)

Jerry Goldsmith talks about Alien (1979)

Jerry Goldsmith talks Lionheart (1987)

Film Composer Interviews A-H

Film Composer Interviews K-Z

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3 thoughts on “Jerry Goldsmith talks The Sand Pebbles (1966)

  1. Pingback: Jerry Goldsmith talks Lionheart (1987) | Film Music Central

  2. Pingback: Jerry Goldsmith talks Chinatown (1974) | Film Music Central

  3. Pingback: Jerry Goldsmith talks Alien (1979) | Film Music Central

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