13 November 2012 9:48 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Composer who scored nearly every Merchant Ivory film from The Europeans onwards and was an integral part of the brand

The Guinness Book of Records notes that the 44-year collaboration between the Indian producer Ismail Merchant and the American director James Ivory was the longest in the history of cinema. They might equally have added the screenwriter Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, who joined the duo from the start. And a member of Merchant Ivory Productions for almost as long was the composer Richard Robbins, who has died after suffering from Parkinson's disease, aged 71.

The Ivory-Robbins working partnership, which lasted over three decades, outdid in longevity such celebrated director-composer unions as Federico Fellini-Nino Rota, Michelangelo Antonioni-Giovanni Fusco and Alfred Hitchcock-Bernard Herrmann. Robbins scored nearly every Merchant Ivory production from The Europeans (1979) onwards, and was an integral part of the film company's brand.

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