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Vivaldi has been used a lot in film, and the Four Seasons is probably his most famous and popular work. Often, in films, you will hear the first party of Vivaldi's Spring (specifically the Allegro) -- where it is often used to protray a "high class" setting, it is used for this purpose in Fantastic Four (2015), in Flubber (1997), and in Pretty Woman (1990).

I'm interested in how this arose historically (what the first movie to use Spring to communicate this to the audience was), and why producers, directors, and editors often choose this piece specifically to communicate that.

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  • It's a very classic, familiar and upbeat music ,at least used since St. Elmo's Fire1985, more movies in list what-song.com/Artist/3484/Antonio-Vivaldi also probably royalty is low/free May 16 at 12:18
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    It appears you are new to this exchange. What you have asked here are several questions. For better results, you should rewrite this question so it is focused. May 16 at 12:19
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    I think the Q is pretty focused now. OP wants to know the first appearence of this song on film and is interested in "quotes" from the filmakers who use this piece in film on why they [so often] choose it. May 16 at 13:10
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    I don't really see how this is asking multiple questions rather than focusing on the background of a specific musical trope employed in myriads of films.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    May 16 at 19:23
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    @JasonPSallinger Sure, but I don't see more than one question asked here, nor how this invites a discussion any more than similar questions asking for the hsitorical background of a particular trope. I feel like I'm missing a paragraph here that anyone else but me (or at least 5 other people) can see but that somehow vanished. I did check the revision history, though. ;-)
    – Napoleon Wilson
    May 16 at 19:37

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When you think of a bunch of stuffy, old, multibillionaires, do you imagine them moshing to Slayer in tshirts, or sitting back in their over-dressed long coats and such, listening to Classical music? The visual is strong, and so the natural background is one of many well-regarded Classical composers, showing they understand and appreciate finer things. Whether it's Vivaldi's Spring or Stravinsky's Firebird, both could be appropriate. However, it's safe to say that 95% of the people who could name a single upbeat, bright and airy Classical piece are going to say "Vivaldi's Spring". I mean, Mussorgsky's stuff was too dark, Bach's stuff was too heavy, Chopin was a bit boring, etc... Additionally, The Four Seasons is in the Public Domain, so there are no licensing issues. In short, it is the perfect piece of music for a High Society party.

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    Mozart and Rossini are also used and fairly well known, like the intro to Trading Places. Note that a composition can be public domain while recordings of it still have to be licensed. The copyright on a recording is a separate copyright from the one on the composition. So licensing fees are paid for classical recordings used in movies. They are only paid to the record companies, not to the composers. For bright upbeat classic anyone could hum, I suspect “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” would win, even if people couldn’t name it. May 16 at 13:07

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