02/08/2012 11:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

John Williams Turns 80: A Look Back At His Greatest Hits (VIDEO)

Happy birthday, John Williams! The iconic film composer, best known for his work on "Star Wars," "Indiana Jones," "Harry Potter," and has been in the movie music game for over 50 years.

Williams' influences by Romantic greats including Mahler, Wagner, Holst, Elgar have helped produce the epic, sentimental style that characterizes his work, which includes indelible tunes like the "Imperial March." Williams has won five Academy Awards, four Golden Globes, and 21 Grammys. His scores for "Tintin" and "War Horse" have earned him another two nominations this year.

It's hard to imagine any of these films without their soundtracks. His music gives you insight into the characters and the universes depicted on screen in a visceral way -- evil feels like evil, good feels like good, victory feels like victory, and fear feels like fear. Take a spin through his greatest hits below:


Here, in a rare documentary from 1980, we see Williams at work during "The Empire Strikes Back" in 1979 and 1980, as well as discussing his work on other films, including "Close Encounters of the Third Kind."

Watch the first installment of the documentary:

[Via Shaun Usher/Behind the Scenes]