Beginning with Ki Lo Sa? in 1985, his scores for television and film totaled 100 by 2007. In these works, he developed a contemplative style that did not attempt to respond beat by beat to the action onscreen, but rather set its own complementary mood. He began to attract attention in the U.S. with The Luzhin Defence in 2000, which had a soundtrack album released in America by Silva Screen Records. His music for Girl with a Pearl Earring (2003) earned a Golden Globe nomination, and with that recognition, he began to work increasingly on English-language films distributed by the Hollywood studios, including but not limited to Birth (2004), The Upside of Anger (2005), Syriana (2005), and The Painted Veil (2006) (a Golden Globe Award winner), several of which produced soundtrack albums.
The Queen (2006) earned him his first Academy Award nomination. He received his second Oscar nomination in 2008 for his work on David Fincher's The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and his third in 2010 for Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr. Fox. The following year, he took home a Grammy Award for his work on The King's Speech. More high-profile film scores followed, including both installments of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Argo, Philomena, and, in 2014, both The Imitation Game and The Grand Budapest Hotel, the latter of which became his first Academy Award win. Subsequent score highlights included The Danish Girl (2015) and the animated feature The Secret Life of Pets (2016). In 2017, he supplied the music for the George Clooney-directed crime thriller Suburbicon as well as Guillermo del Toro's The Shape of Water, which won him a second Oscar. ~ William Ruhlmann, Rovi