Varèse Sarabande and Craft Recordings announce the first-ever vinyl release of Basil Poledouris’ thrilling score for the 1997 cult classic, Starship Troopers. This 2-LP Extended Edition includes 29 cues from the film, remastered by Chas Ferry and Melinda Hurley. The album is housed in a gatefold jacket, featuring new artwork by illustrator and graphic novelist, Malachi Ward. Rounding out the packaging is a fold-out poster of Ward’s design, plus new liner notes by the film’s director, Paul Verhoeven, and musician Zoë Poledouris, who reflects on her late father’s work. Starship Troopers Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is set for release on August 4 and available for pre-order now. Fans can also find a Varèse Sarabande Vinyl Club edition of the album (pressed on Blood & Bug Juice Marble vinyl and limited to 500 copies) exclusively at


Based on the 1959 novel by Robert A. Heinlein, Starship Troopers is set in the 23rd century, when Earth is governed by the militarized United Citizen Federation. Equal parts science fiction and satire, the 1997 film lampoons right-wing nationalism – but cleverly packages it in an action-packed teen drama. The plot centers around teenager Johnny Rico (Casper Van Dien) and his friends, who join Earth’s military to fight an interstellar war against an alien species known as the Arachnids. Directed by Paul Verhoeven (RoboCop, Total Recall, Basic Instinct), Starship Troopers also stars Denise Richards, Neil Patrick Harris, Jake Busey, Dina Meyer, Michael Ironside, and Patrick Muldoon. Elevating the film’s action-packed scenes is a propulsive score by the Emmy®️ Award-winning composer and conductor, Basil Poledouris (Lonesome Dove, RoboCop, The Hunt for Red October).


Composed over a six-month period and performed by the Hollywood Studio Symphony (led by Poledouris), the grand score reflects the film’s authoritarian setting, echoing the precision of a military march. Verhoeven, who had collaborated with Poledouris for more than a decade at the time of production, recalled that the composer was particularly focused on percussion. “The only thing that Basil said in the beginning…was, ‘I need a lot of drums.’ And he got a lot of drums, we had whole tracks of drums! He worked with a specialist in percussion and Basil built the full Starship Troopers score over these drums – which, in some way, represented the dangerous Arachnids!”


Poledouris’ daughter, Zoë, adds that her father drew inspiration from Igor Stravinsky. “I remember him passionately talking about how the chaos of the alien bug swarms would be digitally rendered and choreographed like a sci-fi ballet of madness and carnage – perfect for a cacophonous, driving symphony-style score to be played by an extra-large orchestra.”


While many of the score’s recurring themes are centered around action-heavy military scenes, there are also several emotionally charged cues, as the characters face personal drama, including breakups and even death. Among the highlights are “Carmen’s Departure” and “Losing Carmen,” as well as “Dizzy’s Funeral,” the latter of which Verhoeven describes as “the most beautiful [music] [Poledouris] ever wrote.”


One of the soundtrack’s most memorable moments is the dramatic “Klandhathu Drop,” which keeps viewers on their toes as the troops invade the Arachnids’ planet of Klandhathu. Zoë Poledouris calls the cue, “One of the best examples where the marvelous sound effects dance beautifully with the score. The tragic, seemingly insurmountable challenges that face our heroes just don’t quit once they get going and the music follows it all like an emotional spotlight.” Zoë, who is a film composer herself, also had a cameo in the film – performing her song “Into It” during a prom scene. She recalls that the industrial yet ethereal track, which closes the album, was “strange enough to be futuristic.”


In the years since Starship Troopers’ release, the film has become a cult favorite and frequently ranks among the best films of the ’90s, as well as among the best sci-fi films ever made. Plaudits in roundups by Paste and Thrillist proclaimed, “Verhoeven is at the top of his game.” In a retrospective, The Atlantic called it “an unsung masterpiece,” while the A.V. Club declared Starship Troopers to be “the most subversive major studio film in recent memory.”



Tracklist: Starship Troopers Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

Side A

  1. Fed-Net #1/Bug Attack On Newsman
  2. Telepathy Practice/Carl Orders Cyrano
  3. Friends Forever
  4. Transporting
  5. Fed-Net #2/Crime And Punishment
  6. Carmen’s Shuttle Ride
  7. Undocking
  8. Teamwork
  9. Dear John
  10. Breckinridge Killed
  11. Punishment/Asteroid Grazing
  12. Call To War/Bad News From Home

Side B

  1. War!!
  2. Fed-Net #3/Countdown To Victory
  3. Klendathu Drop
  4. Fed-Net #4
  5. Battle Ready
  6. Rasczak’s Roughnecks
  7. Tango Urilla
  8. Johnny And Dizzy
  9. Hopper Canyon/Mess Hall Mess

Side C

  1. Bugs!!!
  2. Radio Shack/Whiskey Outpost Pt. 2/Death Of Dizzy
  3. Dizzy’s Funeral
  4. Rico’s Roughnecks/Destruction Of The Rodger Young/Bug City

Side D

  1. Brainbug/Cave Nuke
  2. They Will Win
  3. End Titles
  4. Into It - Performed by Zoë Poledouris

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