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FEATURES 48th Annual CAS Awards . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Honoring the best of 2011
Got Mix Assist? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
A new firmware update
Strengthening Muscles You Don’t Use . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
22 DEPARTMENTS President’s Letter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Revamping the CAS footprint
From the Editors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Technically Speaking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Dialing in TV loudness
Been There Done That . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 CAS members check in
The Lighter Side . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Our photo scrapbook
Cover: Simon Rhodes, John Midgley and Tom Fleischman, CAS of Hugo
THE PRESIDENT’S LETTER
Welcome to the spring edition of the CAS Quarterly. Looking back, we’ve had quite a year of growth in our organization. Our election brought a record number of participants who were willing to volunteer their time to the CAS. I was so happy to see this trend, since we depend on our members and the Board to help us grow. We have an incredible brain trust of talent, very diverse and willing to work hard for us all. Our Awards in February were a lot of fun, as we have made some changes to the program and streamlined things a bit. I’d like to thank everyone who contributed to the evening—and there were many who worked hard behind the scenes to help us pull off a wonderful evening. We were able to honor the nominees and winners, as well as enjoy the work of our Career Achievement recipient, Scott Millan, CAS, and our Filmmaker honoree, Rob Marshall. Several standing ovations were a true tribute to their body of work, and the anticipation of enjoying future projects. Congratulations to all the winners and nominees in all of our categories! Speaking of categories, I am happy to report that your new CAS Board of Directors is working hard in several committees to revamp the footprint of the CAS. We are revising, upgrading and expanding our Awards categories. Last year we added scoring mixers as nominees, and this year we are looking to add other mixer classifications as well. Our long-term goal is to honor and recognize all who contribute to a mix. Keep your eyes out in the fall for new information before our Awards go online again. We are revamping our entire social media presence as well. We began with reworking our website, but now we will be taking it a step further to complete the vision of making the website the hub of all our events and information. Through all the social media, we will be able to reach out to our membership around the world and new potential members as never before. So with that in mind, my goals are to give our membership true value. We can bring events to our members all over the country and around the world, along with new potential members, as never before. We are planning seminars and lectures, which can be mobile. I would love to bring a seminar to Europe very soon, and investigate the possibilities of expanding our presence overseas as well. Since the world is shrinking, thanks to technology, we can take advantage and bring others into our organization as never before. The pooling of ideas and sharing of creative processes is very exciting for our craft. Stay tuned! Our education committee is working to offer our student membership seminars and events to help them integrate into our workforce, and learn from professionals. The next generation needs quality information from the people who are in it now—and our group is in the perfect position to lead in this area. I’m very excited about our list of seminars coming up. We will be exploring new mixing techniques and venues, talking about workflow challenges, as well as touring facilities so our members can see the inner workings close-up. So as we begin to enjoy summertime with friends and family, keep an ear to the ground for the CAS. We are expanding upon the good work of those who laid the groundwork for us in previous years, and we now have the resources to act upon all our ideas, and our ideals. We encourage participation from our members; so if you have ideas or suggestions, don’t hesitate to contact us. All the best,
CINEMA AUDIO SOCIETY MISSION STATEMENT
To educate and inform the general public and the motion picture and television industry that effective sound is achieved by a creative, artistic and technical blending of diverse sound elements. To provide the motion picture and television industry with a progressive society of master craftsmen specialized in the art of creative cinematic sound recording. To advance the specialized field of cinematic sound recording by exchange of ideas, methods, and information. To advance the art of auditory appreciation, and to philanthropically support those causes dedicated to the sense of hearing. To institute and maintain high standards of conduct and craftsmanship among our members. To aid the motion picture and television industry in the selection and training of qualified personnel in the unique field of cinematic sound recording. To achieve for our members deserved recognition as major contributors to the field of motion picture and television entertainment.
CAS SPRING 2012 NEW MEMBERS Active Ronan Hill, CAS Bill Jackson, CAS Eric Martell, CAS John Midgley, CAS Patrick Rodman, CAS Michael Stern, CAS Forrest Williams, CAS
Associate Sean Byrnes
Student Kadyn Michaels Tamas Steger Kacie Willis
David E. Fluhr, CAS President of the Cinema Audio Society 4
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FROM THE EDITORS...
The spring Quarterly. This is the time of year when we get to chat with the recipients of this year’s CAS Awards in our meet the winners articles. We really enjoy these interviews, as they allow us to “look” into the process and meet the people behind the sound. Likewise, we also really appreciate those members who offer to serve on the CAS Board of Directors, so we’ve included the recently elected Board. Additionally in this issue, Will Hansen, CAS writes a feature about the Sound Devices 788T’s Mix Assist, which lends a helping hand to production mixers trying to create a clean dialogue track while on a crazy set. G. John Garrett, CAS uses his “Technically Speaking” column to provide some insight into broadcast transmission dynamic and spectral alterations while Paul Vik Marshall, CAS gives some suggestions for keeping the body healthy while on set. And closing out this issue, you can check in on your fellow members in their “Been There Done That” and “The Lighter Side” submissions. The CAS Quarterly is produced as a service to our members on a voluntary basis. A special “thank you” goes out to those taking the time to contribute articles. If you’d like to become one of them, whether on a regular or one-off basis, we would love your help! Additionally, we greatly appreciate and want your feedback and suggestions—so send them in! You can email us at CASQuarterly@CinemaAudioSociety.org. Also remember that our sponsors are professionals like you who understand the business and the needs of our industry. We encourage your commitment to them.
President: David E. Fluhr, CAS Vice President: Mark Ulano, CAS Secretary: David J. Bondelevitch, CAS Treasurer: Peter R. Damski, CAS BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Deb Adair, CAS John Coffey, CAS Edward J. Greene, CAS Tomlinson Holman, CAS Skip Lievsay, CAS Paul Vik Marshall, CAS
Scott Millan, CAS Walter Murch, CAS Lisa Piñero, CAS Randy Thom, CAS Jeff Wexler, CAS
Bob Beemer, CAS Phillip W. Palmer, CAS Sherry Klein, CAS Glen Trew, CAS OFFICE MANAGER
Patti Fluhr EDITORS
Peter Damski, CAS
Matt Foglia, CAS
Peter Damski Matt Foglia PUBLISHER
Past and Present CAS Board of Directors
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Dan Dodd 310.207.4410 x 236 Email: Advertising@IngleDodd.com Front row, L to R: Richard Lightstone, David Bondelevitch, Paul Vik Marshall, Edward L. Moskowitz, Lee Orloff, Melissa Hofmann, Lisa Piñero, Joe Foglia. Back row, L to R: Jeff Wexler, Bob Beemer, Deb Adair, Bob Bronow, John Coffey, David Fluhr, Tomlinson Holman, Phillip W. Palmer, Mark Ulano, Michael Minkler, Frank Morrone, Walter Murch, Scott Millan. Missing: Peter Damski, Ed Greene, Sherry Klein, Skip Lievsay, Randy Thom, Glen Trew. 6
©2012 by the Cinema Audio Society. All rights reserved. CAS®, Cinema Audio Society®, and Dedicated to the advancement of Sound® are all trademarks of the Cinema Audio Society and may not be used without permission.
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Television Loudness by G. J ohn Gar r ett , CAS
In earlier installments, I have written about AM and FM radio audio processing. This time I’m going to look at television and address a few points that may be on your mind (or may not be). I wanted to find out what kind of typical audio processing happens at the transmission facility, and looking at the capabilities of the Orban Optimod 8685 gave some insight. Bob Orban didn’t offer me money to talk about his products here, they just make the most common audio processors out there, so I chose them to use as an example. From the block diagrams and our knowledge of what’s on TV, I think it’s safe to deduce that TV audio processing is different in scope from that of AM or FM radio, but not so much different in nature. In radio, the standard seems to be make everything loud. With television, the content varies enough that not everything is maximized for loudness alone.
OPTIMOD LOUDNESS CONTROLLER
Yes, the first stage is an AGC (Automatic Gain Control), but the interesting stuff comes later. The user can do high/low shelving and tuning with a three-band parametric EQ. Then choose a two-band or five-band compressor/limiter, before optional pre/de-emphasis and then another limiting stage. At best, these stages help the received audio by removing mud and, presumably, increasing intelligibility. At worst, well, it can all be applied inappropriately, can’t it? Of course, another part of the equation is in your TV set. What are you listening on? A full-on studio quality 5.1 surround system or a portable TV with a two-inch speaker? Lowend stuff can’t handle the dynamic range or reproduce the full spectrum, yet the standard for television audio is quite hi-fi. Many TV sets have built-in sound “enhancements,” which often do just the opposite. Broadcasters are trying to hit a lot of different targets at once (sounds a lot like mixing, doesn’t it?).
With digital audio, the peak level is fixed, so the only thing you can tinker with is the loudness, which is peak energy over time. As you’re probably aware, a standard called Dialnorm was developed to ensure that program material would have a, more or less, consistent perceived loudness throughout the day, or channel-to-channel, so the viewer isn’t always adjusting their volume control for regular listening levels. Dialnorm is, basically, the measurement of the average loudness of program content over time. Audio is supposed to be at -24 dB LKFS (Loudness, K-weighted, full scale) and downstream (Dolby AC-3) encoders have their Dialnorm set based on this figure when using fixed Dialnorm. There is also an agile Dialnorm standard, and loudness information is delivered to the encoders via metadata embedded in the program material. Dialnorm loudness measurements are not all that straightforward either. If dialogue is the main element in a program, then that is used as the reference measurement; if it’s music, then someone has to determine what a reasonable listening level is, and sets that as the dialogue level. If there is a lot of quiet material in the program, it can be ignored. Some people are also looking at methods for gating out the quiet during level integration. Another loudness valve, if you will, is the CALM (Commercial Audio Loudness Mitigation) Act, passed in 2010 (see the spring 2010 Quarterly for a great article by Karol Urban, CAS). This act dictates that commercials cannot be louder than program material. Until CALM, commercials could be compressed to death and hit the transmitter’s audio processors with significantly more average energy than program material, awakening many a slumbering viewer. With Dialnorm standards and the CALM act in place, transmission signal processing is more about keeping the loudness close to the spec. You can compress the television audio more, but that increases the Dialnorm number (loudness!) and the overall level has to be reduced. At some point, the program material just sounds more and more compressed, which is not only pointless, but bothersome. This isn’t to say that broadcast engineers won’t do this, but it seems that, once you’ve set up the multi-band compressor-limiters for intelligibility, all that’s left is to adjust the AGC or output limiter to give the right loudness at the output. Thanks to Peter Damski, CAS and Ed Greene, CAS for source material! • More info can be found at the Advanced Television Systems Committee website: • http://atsc.org/cms/ Of special interest is paper A/85 Techniques for Establishing and Maintaining Audio Loudness for Digital Television. • http://atsc.org/cms/standards/a_85-2011a.pdf Also, Orban’s 8685 overview page is short and informative: • http://www.orban.com/products/television/8685/
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by Karol Urban, CAS
The 48th Annual CAS Awards
Honors the Best of 2011
On Saturday, February 18, 2012, the Cinema Audio Society held its 48th Annual Awards in the Crystal Ballroom of the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles. It was an elegant, star-studded evening honoring top audio talent and the best technological advances serving the industry from the last year. This year, the Cinema Audio Society recognized and honored outstanding mixing in four categories: Motion Pictures; TV Movies and Mini-Series; TV Series; and TV Non-Fiction, Variety or Music – Series or Specials. The program was emceed for the fifth consecutive year by entertainment reporter Sam Rubin and featured the live music of the Nelson Kole Trio. More than 400 guests enjoyed a cocktail hour in the Tiffany Room, posed for pictures, and dined amongst friends and colleagues in the Crystal Ballroom. Our president, David Fluhr, CAS, summed up the spirit of the evening when making his presidential remarks, “The future is built on the actions of today and the achievements of yesterday. Throughout the last year, sound mixers everywhere have elevated our craft.” Bob Bronow, CAS was the first called to the stage this year, receiving his fourth consecutive CAS Award for his incredible work on the series Deadliest Catch. The award-winning episode this year was “New Blood” and won in the category of Sound Mixing for TV Non-Fiction, Variety or Music – Series or Specials. For the eighth year, the CAS recognized the year’s best technical achievements and innovations. The 2011 winners were Avid’s Pro Tools 10 and Zaxcom’s Nomad Production Sound System for their contribution to post production and production sound, respectively. Rob Marshall was awarded the prestigious Filmmaker Award for his gift of opportunity and inspiration toward his sound crew. Michael Minkler, CAS, Lee Orloff, CAS, and Paul Massey, CAS each spoke of their collaboration with Rob. But it was Academy Award® winner Penelope Cruz, who presented his award after some heartfelt words on their relationship. It was clear from the comments made by each that Rob’s unique style and approach to filmmaking have garnered him a very loyal and grateful cast and crew. Following the Filmmaker Award, production sound mixer Franklin D. Stettner, CAS and re-recording mixer Tom Fleischman, CAS won their second consecutive award for their work on the series Boardwalk Empire. This year’s win was in recognition of the episode “To the Lost.” This would turn out to be the first of two trips to the podium for Tom that evening. The sound mixing team of production mixer James J. Sabat, CAS, re-recording mixers Chris Jenkins and Bob Beemer, CAS, and scoring mixer Chris Fogel won the category of Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for a TV Movie or Mini-Series for HBO’s Too Big to Fail. Chris Jenkins expressed his gratitude by saying, “Being recognized by your peers means they get what you are doing and they get what your contribution is. It is really important.” The year’s top honoree and recipient of the CAS Career Achievement Award was Scott Millan, CAS. Scott’s mixes have not only captivated audiences worldwide but have earned him, among many other honors, four Academy Awards and three CAS Awards. The award was presented by past CAS Career Achievement Award recipient and two-time Academy Award winner Walter Murch, CAS as well as Grammy®- and Emmy® Award–winning composer Thomas Newman.
Finally, the award for Oustanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for Motion Pictures went to the exquisite work of production mixer John Midgley, re-recording mixer Tom Fleischman, CAS and scoring mixer Simon Rhodes for Hugo. Simon Rhodes joined Chris Fogel as the very first music scoring mixers to receive CAS Awards as this is a new category of honoree included by CAS this year. Both have set the bar high for talented future nominees. As the awards concluded, guests spilled back out into the Tiffany Room to take an opportunity to congratulate this year’s winners at the after party. Our sincere congratulations go out to the many incredibly talented nominees and award recipients who have inspired and delighted us this year with their incredible achievements. Meet the Winners videos featuring interviews of this year’s award recipients can be viewed online at www.cinemaaudiosociety.org. Please save the date of February 16, 2013, for our 49th CAS Awards, to be held once again in the beautiful Crystal Ballroom at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles.
Award Winners for 2011
OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT FOR MOTION PICTURES
John Midgley Production Mixer Tom Fleischman, CAS Re-recording Mixer Simon Rhodes Scoring Mixer OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT FOR TV MOVIES AND MINI-SERIES
Too Big to Fail
James J. Sabat, CAS Production Mixer Chris Jenkins Re-recording Mixer Bob Beemer, CAS Re-recording Mixer Chris Fogel Scoring Mixer OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT FOR TV SERIES
Boardwalk Empire “To the Lost” Franklin D. Stettner, CAS Production Mixer Tom Fleischman, CAS Re-recording Mixer OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT FOR TV NON-FICTION, VARIETY OR MUSIC – SERIES OR SPECIALS
Deadliest Catch “New Blood” Bob Bronow, CAS TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT IN PRODUCTION
Zaxcom Nomad Production Sound System TECHNICAL ACHIEVEMENT IN POST PRODUCTION
Avid Pro Tools 10
Left: Penelope Cruz and 2012 CAS Filmmaker Award honoree Rob Marshall Below: 2012 CAS Career Achievement Award honoree Scott Millan, CAS and CAS President David Fluhr
Above left, L to R: Walter Murch, CAS, Scott Millan, CAS and Thomas Newman Above: Glen Sanders from Zaxcom Left: The Pro Tools gang
HUGO by Matt Foglia, CAS To quote one of last year’s winners in this category, Greg Orloff, CAS, “There are a number of films that were released this year that had incredible mixes.” That sentiment keeps holding true. In fact, it seems like the caliber of mixes just keeps improving, making the awards season that much more difficult. That being the case, there was still something about the sound of Hugo that resonated more with the membership (and AMPAS). Perhaps the interplay between dialogue and music or the movement of the sound effects as they weaved their way through the musical score. To get some insight into the process and decisions that led to the final product, I chatted with production mixer John Midgley, scoring mixer Simon Rhodes and re-recording mixer Tom Fleischman, CAS. Below are excerpts from our conversations. John, since this is your first appearance in the Quarterly, could you tell us what got you “into” sound for picture, and how you progressed from TV to working on such high-profile projects as Star Wars: Episode 1, Harry Potter and Hugo? After messing about with pop and blues groups and mobile discos, I was persuaded, at the age of 20, to get a “proper job.” So I applied to the BBC to be trained as a technical operator and then continued training at Television Centre, London, where I studied sound and camera. But after driving a Heron camera crane into the Cyclorama on a live TV program called Blue Peter, they thought I’d better stick to sound! After six enjoyable but frustrating years at the BBC (the dead man’s shoes problem), I was offered a job to help set up a television company with a colleague for the construction company Taylor Woodrow. We built a state-of-the-art TV studio at Shepperton Studios but, after two years, I found that it was turning into a mini-BBC, and left. In 1981, with another colleague, I set up “Redapple,” a shooting facilities company. This is still running, but we parted ways in 1994 so that I could concentrate on my sound mixing career. Alongside all of this, in the ’80s, I also had financial/operating interests in a number of sound and video studios. Up until 1994, I had been concentrating mainly on TV drama, but the budgets were being cut. The sound crewing was becoming a problem—the third man was always the first to go, to be replaced by a trainee. Astonishingly, the money for TV now in 2012 is not much more than it was in 1994, and the third man/ trainee is on less! Then in 1997, I was asked to work on two of The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, and subsequently picked to mix Star Wars: Episode 1. How do you prepare yourself and your crew for projects? To prepare for a project: having read the script, I try to identify the problems that could befall the sound crew. That might mean discussing with the director how he/she intends to cover a particular scene, music playback methods, noise/ergonomic problems on shooting scenes in vehicles, special FX noises that can be eliminated. On Children of Men, even though there was a lot of dialogue in the hero car, and the scenes were going to be shot on a 360-degree Q Doggicam from above, they had not thought to
include room for a sound mixer. Needless to say, I ended up in the boot (trunk), only accessed by getting the rear seat pushed forward. What kind of preparations do you take with regards to interacting with the set builders and costume department? I always try to walk the set (if they’re built), because I have had bad experiences of floors built on rostra that have not had some sort of deadening material used. In England, they often use tongue-and-groove chipboard placed straight onto our old studio floors, which are not flat.... I usually spend a morning in the costume department feeling the clothing materials and sussing out who will be dressing whom because this pays dividends later. The dialogue recording on Hugo must have been, in a word, “challenging.” Well, we shot the Station Concourse at Shepperton Studios, and it was the most difficult for the following reasons: • 250 extras walking around on a floor that is meant to be stone/marble, but is actually plastic tiles stuck on chipboard—very creaky sounding. However, this was often drowned out by the steam. • There were steam effects machines all around the concourse, and we had a constant battle to ensure those that were not going to appear in the shot were switched off. • The clocks were a problem because they didn’t sound right—plastic/rubber pulleys and cogs with electric motors. • And last but not least: Dog handlers who couldn’t stop yelling over the dialogue! • And last but not least (again!): The camera fans! Although we were shooting on Alexas, where the fans go off when the camera starts recording, we weren’t actually recording on the Alexa, so the fans kept running continuously. • And last but not least again again (!): The camera lenses on 3D camera setups constantly “twitter” very noisily, so it’s best not to have the actors too close to the cameras. CAS QUARTERLY
Sounds like a crazy set! Even with all of that, is there a particular scene or setup that you found even more difficult? One of the most difficult scenes was the Steadicam shot into Georges Melies’ apartment. I think I used all 10 tracks, with some being switched to different radio-mics during the scene, and there was the band in the corner on an induction loop! Because of the complications of 3D shooting, during the scouts I spent most of my time trying to work out where all the engineering tents could go. Not too close to the set because of the noise, but not too far away because of the length of the camera cables. Also, working out where Marty’s tent could go. Then, drawing a plan and diplomatically suggesting it to the first AD.
Obviously, music was an equal character in the film. Can you share with us how the process evolved? It was (composer) Howard Shore’s idea to give a good representation of the music from the get-go. As soon as reels were turned over to him, he would compose the music and we’d record it with a small group in London—which they pad out with fake orchestra. Howard would monitor the sessions in New York using (the software plug-in) Source Connect. The group was typically piano, bass, acoustic guitar (Django Reinhart style), drums (1920s Paris café style), musette and ondes martenot or violin. Many of these recordings were keepers and used as part of the final score.
Were you and your team responsible for the playback of the train station band (led by Johnny Depp)? For all the Tea Dance scenes, we ran an induction loop above the actors’ heads and fed the dancers and musicians with the music.
While some of our membership comes from a music engineering background, for the most part, they’re either production or post-production focused. Can you provide a glimpse into your setups for a session, equipment you prefer to use, how sessions tend to run? I tend to use the best gear I can get my hands on, and there’s plenty of good stuff at Abbey Road! Modern film sessions tend to be pretty complicated affairs with multiple Pro Tools rigs, streamers, headphones, communication systems and filmmakers to tend to. The knack is not loosing sight of what you are trying to do—creating an environment where everyone can perform to the peak of there abilities. If you achieve this, then you walk away with excellent tracks.
In addition to dialogue, and given the set, any interesting extra sounds you went and recorded? We always seemed to be grabbing tracks of the steam! Because I knew the clocks would have to be replaced, I didn’t pay much attention to them, except to try to quiet them! Now, for the “gear talk” segment of our interview. Can you provide some insight into your setup? Equipment: Deva V, Audio Developments AD149 mixer, Audio Radio microphones with Trams usually, although I also have DPA and Countryman. In the booms, Sennheiser MKH60 mics. For post, I do a simple mono mix on track one, followed by radio mics and booms isolated onto tracks 2–10. I often experiment with different phasing on radio mics/booms, to try to lose background, but this probably is not apparent in post, unless they use my mix track. Simon Rhodes is the first recipient of a CAS Award for Motion Picture Mixing with the credit title of “Scoring Mixer.” We’re proud of this new acknowledgment within this category and are happy that Simon took a break from working on the upcoming Spider-Man movie to give us some insight into himself and his craft. Thanks for taking the time, Simon. So, what sparked your interest in sound and how did your career take off? I had a pretty good idea what I wanted to do as an impressionable 12 year old seeing Star Wars for the first time. It was in Dolby, the music was amazing and I was in heaven. I was also very interested in classical music and decided to become either a balance engineer or a producer. One of my favorite records was engineered by the EMI engineer Christopher Parker and, years later, I actually became his apprentice, re-mastering analogue recordings for reissue on CD in Room 41 at Abbey Road (AR). Ken Townsend was the boss of the studios then and took me on from a temporary job at EMI I’d landed after university. After a couple of years at AR, I started doing small-scale classical engineering and assisting on film sessions and gradually moved up from there. 14
Given how the score weaves in and out of the dialogue and effects, what mixes and stems did you deliver to post? I delivered the music in 8 x 5.1 stems with small group spread over 6 and the orchestra over 2. I’ll let you go, as I hear you’re being summoned, but before I do, is there a fun memory you recall from your Hugo sessions? Well, during the mix, I did drag the entire crew, including Howard, up the perilous roof to see the ISS fly over only to discover it was totally overcast! Tom Fleischman, CAS made a great showing at this year’s CAS Awards ceremony, picking up two awards. Hi Tom! I feel like I just spoke with you a minute ago (since I just completed the Boardwalk Empire interview)! Yeah, right! (laughs) So, the mix for this movie reminds me of ocean waves—with each element weaving in and out and making room for the next element. Like dialogue shifting to music, music then shifting to effects, etc. As if one element is crescendoing in while another is decrescendoing out. It’s like there is this onslaught of sound that is so dense—but just flows so smoothly. Can you speak a little about that? I think the idea of sounds shifting and weaving from one to another is actually a good way to describe the re-recording process in general. It is certainly the basis for the way that Marty Scorsese has always treated sound in his films. The idea that at any given moment in the film there is one sound element that needs to dominate and be heard, whether that element is a note of music, a
drumbeat, a song lyric, a line of dialogue, or a sound effect. One sound giving way in the next moment to something else is how I have always described working on a Scorsese project. The transitions are always key to Marty, that is, how a particular sound or music cue transitions in and out from one to the next. This is probably what I spend more of my time on than anything else. Some of his films are more like this than others and Hugo is a good example. I think the ultimate example of this kind of approach is the crazy cocaine/helicopter sequence in GoodFellas. What is your mix approach when you’re given such a sound dense film as this? Do you go and do a general dialogue pass and then mix in the music & effects after? I always begin mixing with dialogue, ADR and loop group. Those elements form the dialogue pre-dub, and this is the foundation of the soundtrack. My approach during this process is to smooth and equalize all of the dialogue and ADR so that all of the choices between production and ADR are made, or are prepared as a choice of two versions which can easily be played quickly back-to-back for Marty or (film editor) Thelma (Schoonmaker) to choose. Final panning, reverb, perspectives, and levels are left for the final mix when all other sound elements are present. The idea is to create a seamless dialogue mix with all of the ADR and group loop integrated, cleaned up, and separated into a logically laid out and manageable number of tracks, so I can focus on integrating the dialogue with the rest of the sound elements during the final mix—without worrying too much about matching EQ and signal processing. The dialogue pre-dub is then played as a mix element with all of the other sound elements in the film, and that is when the fun begins. John Midgley commented on some of the very challenging locations he had to capture dialogue in. Do you recall any particular locations that proved more difficult to deal with from a dialogue mixing standpoint? The biggest challenge was the steam. John’s sound reports were a running commentary on “the ruddy steam.” There were steam generators everywhere on the train station set. There was a fair amount of ADR done on account of it, but many lines Marty refused to loop or didn’t want to use the ADR, and we had to deal with it. Eugene (Gearty—supervising sound editor) was very clever in the way he placed small FX bursts of steam to allow me to find my way in and out of problematic lines of dialogue, and of course, having music, FX steam and big gears turning in the picture through much of the movie helped sell the steamy dialogue tracks as well. Toward the end, during the scene where Georges tells the story about his past, his narrative takes on a wider, encompassing tonality. Do you recall what Mr. Scorsese’s thoughts were for that scene and how you came to the final approach? I think much of the feeling of the tonality change in that sequence has to do with the music. The dialogue is mostly voice-over, Georges telling the story, and is straightforward. But the tonality of the score changes in that sequence and the music shifts from Howard Shore’s score to an Eric Satie piano piece, which is quite different musically from any of the other music in the movie. Although the music and voice-over carry this
sequence, the sound effects were also treated and placed away with more reverb. We tried for a more ethereal quality to the underlying track. There is one short CGI shot near the end of the sequence where Georges’ studio falls into decay and collapses that we did a lot of experimentation with before getting the sound effect right. The music plays as vital a role as the dialogue and effects in this movie. What did scoring mixer Simon Rhodes provide you as far as mix & stems? I was provided full stems for the score. There was a full orchestra stem with splits for percussion, bass, and all of the lead instruments, piano, horns, musette, guitar, and onde (the glass instrument which sounds something like running your finger around a water glass). The stems played at unity comprised the full mix. Just to be nosey, run me through your mix setup. We run five Pro Tools playback sessions, two dialogue and one each for music, FX, and Foley. These sessions are all patched to the Euphonix System 5 console. For the dialogue patch, I use my own odd setup. The System 5 has “A” and “B” inputs to each input channel. These “A” and “B” inputs are switchable with an automated switch. I make a clone of the dialogue pre-dub, and this is patched to the “A” input of the dialogue channels on the Euphonix. Dialogue supervisor Phil Stockton also has this predub running from his rig with all of the original dialogue and ADR units inactive but available. The pre-dub from Phil’s rig was patched to the “B” inputs of the dialogue channels. This allowed Phil to stay offline if he needed to do something with his rig while I continued mixing using the “A” input clone. When he was ready with whatever change he was making, I would just switch inputs on the Euphonix from “A” to “B” and I’d be getting the new material in place of the old. When the reel was taken down, the clone would be updated to include whatever changes he had made. The next time the reel went up, I would delete all of the automated input switching and we’d be back where we began with the pre-dub and clone mirrored in the “A” and “B” inputs. We record the mix on a separate Pro Tools recorder. I make five Final Stems, Dialogue (5.0), Music (5.1), FX (5.1), BG (5.0), and Foley (LCR), and a simultaneous 5.1 combined Print Master, which we monitor while mixing. Share with us some of the more challenging effects-based scenes. Of course, the train crash was a challenge. I had fun experimenting and coming up with a way to effectively use the side surround speakers in the 7.1 forma. On the close-up shots of the train wheels, I moved the sounds of the big pistons from front and center to side surround. The scene where the two kids first turn on the automaton was also a challenging sequence, which we spent a great deal of time on. This was one of the sequences which had steam problems in the dialogue and which Marty did not want to loop, so getting the dialogue to work without the on-set steam becoming a distraction took some creative FX steam work by Eugene to help us with the steamiest lines. You mention 7.1. How was it mixing in that format? I really enjoyed working in the Dolby 7.1 format with quad surCAS QUARTERLY
rounds. It lent another dimension to the track and made the music and ambient sound effects feel much more enveloping. I was also able to use it to good effect with some of the 3D visuals and it was useful with bringing sounds to the foreground in some of the shots. The word “variety” screams out when reviewing your body of work. Going from intense, full-blown feature films like Hugo and Shutter Island to concert films like Shine a Light to documen-
taries like Living in the Material World and No Direction Home, to TV shows like Boardwalk Empire, just to name a few. Does working on a diverse range of material help keep your craft (and mind) fresh, since you get to implement different approaches based upon the material? Yes, it does. One the joys of being a mixer, and one of the things I love most about mixing sound for films, is that I am able to work on something different every time. The job is never the same, and it never gets boring!
TV Movie and Mini-Series
TOO BIG TO FAIL by Karol Urban, CAS This year’s recipient of the Outstanding Achievement in Sound Mixing for a TV Movie and Mini-Series, Too Big to Fail, takes a fascinating look at the momentous financial crisis of 2008. Based on the best-selling book by Andrew Ross Sorkin, Too Big to Fail documents the interactions of those involved and gives human emotion and face to the critical relationships between Wall Street and The White House. Driven mainly by dialogue and generally set in a series of offices, boardrooms, and government buildings, the movie somehow translates as a high-tension race to save the American economy from an unimaginable financial collapse. The award-winning crew consisted of production mixer James Sabat, CAS, re-recording mixers Chris Jenkins and Bob Beemer, CAS, and scoring mixer Chris Fogel. This is Sabat’s second CAS win, having won a CAS Award and Emmy in 2004 for his previous work on the miniseries Angels in America. Chris Jenkins is a two-time Oscar-winning re-recording mixer who also accepted his second CAS Award this year. His first was a special Presidential Award, given in 2004, in recognition of his restoration work on Stanley Kubrick’s films. Also no stranger to the podium, Bob Beemer collected his fifth CAS Award for Too Big to Fail. Bob has also earned four Oscars as well as various other awards for his stellar mixes. The 2012 Awards were the first year that the CAS awarded scoring mixers alongside their production and re-recording partners. First-time CAS Award–winning scoring mixer Chris Fogel’s career not only boasts an impressive list of film credits, it also includes an imposing list of musicals and albums by artists such as Aerosmith and U2. A three-person production sound team employed a Fostex PD-606 and Cooper mixer, with Sennheiser 416 capturing, primarily, the interior dialogue. Audio Limited Wireless captured exterior dialogue along with two booms to not only capture on-camera dialogue, but off-camera dialogue when possible. James Sabat explains, “The film had great production value because we shot at iconic New York City locations—from the middle of Times Square to the Wall Street bull.” In post, the sound was mixed on a Harrison console with built-in processing featuring noise reduction and multi-band compression. Chris Jenkins performed the extremely complicated, and almost constant, dialogue mix. It involved many overlapping conversations and dialogue which then carried over 16
From left: Chris Jenkins, James Sabat, CAS and Bob Beemer, CAS on Too Big to Fail.
as voice-over in later scenes. Quick cuts from one scene to another helped to drive the pace of the film. A week was provided for pre-dub, which was a huge aid to the project. Given the nature of the story, the dialogue was very technical, specialized and detailed. A large onus was thus placed on the music and sound effects departments in order to ensure dynamism. Bob Beemer, responsible for the effects mixing, states, “Whether a poignant music cue pre- or post-lapped dialogue, or an interesting spin on the sound effects, or simply judicious placement of offstage activity, such as city horns, sirens or buses; or on-camera activity like nervous throat clearing or paper rustling or pacing; we were always conscious of keeping the energy percolating—even while the audience had to digest complicated information.” He sites Audio Ease’s Altiverb as a noteworthy tool in executing this detail. Michael Kirschberger and Roy Waldspurger led the crew of FX and background editors, which prepped in Pro Tools. Beemer had the challenge of mixing all the Foley and FX tracks without any pre-dub time. The whole film was mixed, including print master, in a matter of three weeks. Despite its small-screen delivery, Too Big to Fail has a very large theatrical sound and feel. Both Jenkins and Beemer attribute this to the filmmakers involved and their film-mixing background. Chris Jenkins states that this is the first television project he had participated in more than 25 years. But he adds, “It’s Paula Weinstein, Curtis Hanson and the HBO people ... they are filmmakers. It’s great storytelling. It’s compelling work.” Bob Beemer sites that the largest difference between the mix of this project and that of a feature film was “less time and the mixers having less familiarity with the material in the pro-
cess—since the budget dictated the sound editors having to ‘mix’ the tracks in Pro Tools.” The hard work of the production and post teams culminates in an incredible depiction of events that have been on everyone’s minds since they took place in 2008. Too Big to Fail offers a fly-on-the-wall perspective that humanizes the players involved,
showing their greed, panic, sorrow and pride. Beemer surmises, “I think we all felt that we were not just making a gripping movie story, but also performing a public service by providing the public with crucial information to contemplate about an American calamity in our very recent history.”
BOARDWALK EMPIRE “To the Lost” by Matt Foglia, CAS Up for a repeat win this year are production mixer Frank Stettner, CAS and re-recording mixer Tom Fleischman, CAS. In last year’s meet the winners article (CAS Quarterly, spring 2011), we were able to get to know Frank and Tom and their backgrounds. This year, we’ll hear how things have progressed since the first season (they’re currently in production on season three). First up, we’ll talk about the production process with Frank Stettner. For season two, were there any workflow or approach changes that you implemented as a result of how things went during season one? We never needed to alter the workflow between season one and season two. The post producer felt everything worked between us in the field, Telecine, editorial, sound editing and the final mix. However, we did adjust our techniques as varying situations in the field required. For example, we had scenes with character Richard Harrow (played by Jack Huston) that required shooting three days in the woods, sometimes far off the road. We rented a portable package based around a Sound Devices 788 to use when we had to walk deeper into the woods. It was early April, which is black fly season in upstate New York. My years of hiking in Maine and New Hampshire told me to bring a head net to keep the flies out of my nose and eyes. By lunch, production had bought as many head nets as they could find for the rest of the crew, except for the electricians, who made their own out of Roscoe Scrim. I noticed in a recent “Been There Done That” post that you have two boom operators now for season three. Was that the case for season two and season one? Sam Perry and Peter Fonda, the two boom ops, don’t work at the same time. They alternate every two weeks. Each one of our episodes has two days of second unit per episode, so the boom op that is “off” comes to first unit with me and the other goes to second unit. This allows Larry Provost, our second unit mixer, to have someone on his team who is familiar with what we did on main unit during that episode. Also, when I go on tech scout for the upcoming episode or need a day for personal reasons, Peter can bump up to mix in my stead. If I need a second boom for any particular shot, TK (Toussaint Kotright), my third, bumps up.
Peter Fonda, boom, Toussaint Kotright, utility, Frank Stettner, CAS, mixer
Tom Fleischman, CAS, presenter Catherine Bach and Frank Stettner, CAS from Boardwalk Empire.
Talking shop, what’s your setup look like? I am recording on a pair of Fostex 824s, one set as the master and the other as slave. They parallel record all audio and metadata. I turn in two DVD-RAM’s for Telecine. I’m mixing on a Cooper CS208 D. I have a Venue receiver with two full-sized 250 mW belt pack transmitters for boom one and two. I have two SMV and two SMQV for wiring talent. The lavs are Countryman B6, COS 11, and Sonotrims. I use Sennheiser 416, Schoeps CMC 4-41s and 4-4s. Occasionally, I find use for an MK 70. My video monitors are a pair of Marshall VR70P HDSDI LCDs. Have you made any interesting rig changes or swaps since season one? The largest equipment switch I made was between seasons two and three. I replaced the PSC Power Max with the PSC Power Max CAS QUARTERLY
Ultra. I was able to consolidate a few stand-alone 12 V supplies into the Ultra, which functions as a UPS for the whole rig. I have survived at least one plug kick out so far without losing a take. Are you still shooting on film or have they moved to HD? We still shoot on film; three-perf 35mm. Though, just in time for season three, Panavision developed an HD video tap. I had to upgrade my multi-cables from video assist to allow me to get my feed in HD. If I were to take a SD feed, there would be a threeframe video delay for the down conversion and another threeframe delay as I up-converted back to HD for my monitors. This would make precise mixing to picture as tough as it was trying to mix “off tape” in Nagra days. Has the balance of location and stage shooting remained fairly consistent? In season two, the show went from about 60% on the stage to about 75% interior and exterior locations or recurring locations. I am surprised how many New York City houses, churches, offices, and streets exterior can look like 1920 when dressed for the period. Shooting more scenes out makes me rely on the radios as the base of my mix. Producing useable sound on location in New York has always been difficult, but, hey, that’s what I have been doing for the last 40 years! Were there any rather difficult setups that made you dig a little deeper into your experiences in order to capture the sound with a level of quality that you expect? Several of the new standing locations were less than “sound friendly,” for example, Nucky and Margaret’s new house. We use the Commandant’s House, overlooking the Brooklyn Navy Yard. There is a sewage treatment plant off to the left which, besides being quite odiferous on warm days, emits a low whine and hum constantly. From time to time, the plant turns on some other pump or processor that makes a louder machine whine. Also, the Brooklyn Impound Lot, where all the towed cars are brought, is just below the house. The backup alarms of the tow trucks sound regularly as do the car alarms from their “customers.” These distractions are most noticeable during scenes shot in the Greenhouse Conservatory, where there are single panes of glass between the actors and outside noise. I have to make straight radio mics work in this situation to minimize the backgrounds. Inside the house, with its thick walls, the noises are less prominent, so in addition to the radios, I can try to open the mix up with the boom if possible, but for insurance, we always have the radio tracks iso’d for post. We always shoot more than enough material for editorial choices and tweaking. Often while rolling, the actors themselves pause when they hear a backup alarm and wait till it stops. They stay in character and continue after the distraction ends. Sounds like you’ve been able to adapt to the environments pretty well. Any locations stick out where you knew the location sound wouldn’t fully be able to cut it? There was only one scene looped last season from Nucky and Margaret’s because of noise. We shot outside on the front porch. The radios and actors’ projection were not enough to overcome the total noisy sound scape. Another difficult new location was Jimmy and Angela’s new house on the beach. The actual location was on the shore of 18
Staten Island. Overhead is the inbound approach from the south to both LaGuardia and JFK. Aircraft pass overhead at about 800 feet every two minutes from early in the morning to after midnight, when they subside. The house also has many glass windows and surfaces, non-tilting windows, so boom reflections were always a factor. The approach to recording was to primarily rely on the radios. Our actors and directors knew to pause while the planes cleared. I don’t believe there were any scenes ADR’d because of noise at the beach house location, though. In addition to dialogue, do you recall any interesting ambiences or extraneous sounds that were specific to a location that you figured could help post and, therefore, went and captured? Yes, we were able to record nice surf and waves every time we were at a location out at the beach in Staten Island or at Fort Tilden along the Brooklyn shore. So far for season three, we have a quiet location with a long, paved road in Staten Island. We recorded Model T cars and trucks, running, starting, passbys, and onboard to build a library for the sound editors to use. On the receiving end of those recordings is re-recording mixer Tom Fleischman, CAS. Did you feel you had gotten most of the kinks out of the mix process after the first season? Yes, by the end of season one, we had our process well worked out. The sound editorial crew was made up of the same crew that I had worked with on many of the Scorsese movies. We were all very familiar with the workflow that we had developed over the years and we had adapted that same workflow for the series. If you don’t mind, can you provide us with some insight as to what you receive and how you set up for providing your deliverables? No problem. Each department (Dialogue, Music, Effects) delivers their elements to the mix on a separate Pro Tools session. The dialogue, ADR, and loop group are delivered in one 32-track session. We do not pre-dub the dialogue, it just goes into the mix along with the effects and music, and all mixing is done directly from what is delivered to the stage. The dialogue is prepared so that we can easily choose ADR and production alternates. The music in season two was much less complex than in season one. There were fewer set pieces and most of the music came from old recordings. In the few situations where new recordings were made, it was delivered in much the same way as in season one. In those cases, a mix of the band, minus lead instruments and vocals, was provided with separate tracks for the leads and vocals. The archival recordings are provided as stereo pairs, in spite of the fact that these old recordings are actually mono. This makes it a bit easier to spread this mono material into a 5.1 format. Sound effects are delivered to the mix on two Pro Tools sessions, with Foley in its own session. Foley is normally limited to 16 tracks, which are pre-dubbed in Pro Tools and divided into two 8-channel mono pre-dubs of footsteps and props. All panning is done in the final mix, but I don’t do much panning of Foley unless there is a good reason to do it. Sound effects are pre-dubbed in a 48-track session with four 5.1 and eight LCR stems. The 5.1 stems are split between ambience and design FX, the LCR stems have everything else.
The four Pro Tools sessions (Dialogue, Music, FX, Foley) are patched to the Euphonix System 5 console—and away we go! We record the mix on a separate Pro Tools recorder and I make five final stems: Dialogue (5.0), Music (5.1), FX (5.1), BG (5.0), and Foley (LCR), and a simultaneous 5.1 combined Print Master, which we monitor while mixing. In addition to those you just mentioned, are there any other mix versions that you have to provide, say, for International? We deliver a 5.1 M&E (international version) with a 5.1 optional material stem and a 5.1 filled FX stem, which is a combination of the three FX stems with Foley and FX added to provide the sound effects lost when the English dialogue is removed. Were there any particular locations that routinely had dialogue that was a little more troublesome than others and how did
they affect the need for ADR? Since the set is built on the banks of the East River just across from the south end of Manhattan, there is a fair amount of distant city in all of the exterior tracks, but it’s isolated and generic enough so that it hasn’t become much of a problem. The one location that I have had problems with is the glass-enclosed conservatory set in Nucky’s house. That one seems to consistently give me the most noise problems. ADR is done sometimes due to noise, but the majority of ADR is done for performance or script changes. Thanks for taking the time, Tom. Anything in conclusion? I’m looking forward to season three! We start mixing in June and I can’t wait to find out where they go with the story. Thanks again, Frank and Tom, and congratulations on another great season of mixing.
TV Non-Fiction, Variety or Music – Series or Specials
DEADLIEST CATCH “New Blood” by Peter Damski, CAS I had the honor and pleasure in interviewing Bob Bronow, CAS after his third CAS Award for Outstanding Sound Mixing for Non-Fiction programming. This was the fourth time that Deadliest Catch was nominated in this category. Mr. Bronow balances his career with his love for music and, most importantly, his family life. Bob came to visit SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design—where I teach) last fall and gave a master class on his approach to mixing and editing. The students are still talking about his visit, which is indicative of his impact on them. Bob has also been an active CAS Board member for several years, serving on the Tech Awards Committee for many of those years. Bob’s grandmother recently passed away, and he is in the midst of building a beautiful new mandolin in honor of her life. I have been tracking the construction and no detail has been missed, it is a truly beautiful piece of art. I invite you to visit his Facebook page to get a glimpse. Here is the interview. I hope it will give some insight into Mr. Bronow. How many years have you been mixing the show? I’ve been mixing Deadliest Catch since the three-part miniseries, which was called America’s Deadliest Season, premiered July 18, 2004. At the time, I was mixing some other shows for Original Productions when Thom Beers came to me and said, ‘You going to mix the crab show?’ I said, ‘Sure.’ How has your equipment and approach changed over the years? I’ve always used Pro Tools, but since then, lots of other things have changed. Pro Tools 6 is now Pro Tools 10. My Pro Control has become a D-Command console. One of the most notable technical changes has been the amazing development in noise-reduction technology. Since we have no sound mixers on the boat, all of the audio comes, primarily,
Bob Bronow, CAS at console (above) & with his award (right).
from camera and lavaliere microphones. Needless to say, a crab fishing vessel in the middle of the Bering Sea is a hostile environment for everything—including sound. Our cameramen do an amazing job of getting the footage for the show, all the while keeping an eye out for rogue waves and falling crab pots! There are huge engines turning, hydraulics running, waves crashing ... you get the picture. Audio can come to me full of clicks, crackle, over-modulation and be buried in engine hum. The technology which allows me to combat those foes has grown by leaps and bounds since I started mixing Catch. CAS QUARTERLY
My approach to mixing Deadliest Catch has always been to convey the emotion and magnitude of what these people are doing. For me, sound has always been a very emotional thing, so I enjoy using it to tell these stories. The dialogue is the story and everything else in the show serves that. So I do everything I can to make sure that all of it is as intelligible as I can make it. To this end, I always start the mix with a noise-reduction pass. Then I do a narration, dialogue and nat sound pre-dub. That’s the show’s anchor. That’s the story. Then all of the other elements wrap around that. Has the show become easier to mix due to your familiarity with it? I don’t think I’d ever say that Deadliest Catch was easy to mix. I’d say that each episode has a varying degree of difficulty. That being the case, and while I’m often surprised, I usually know what to expect when I start a mix. I know that we’re usually going to be: on deck, below deck, in the wheelhouse, in port, etc.... Of course, the sound environment on a fishing vessel is fluid at best. Conditions are always changing on the Bering Sea. One day in the galley might yield great audio. The next day, the galley could be awash in rattles and engine drone. I’m always trying to make each episode sound better than the last. I’m always looking for new technology and techniques to make the mixes better. That keeps everything fresh. Considering the lack of a production sound crew on the show, has the production sound improved over the years? Have these
improvements come from your suggestions? Can you give a few examples? If you’ve seen the “Behind-the-Scenes” episodes, you know the hell these guys go through to get this amazing footage. Most of the cameras and microphones that are brought on to the boats are destroyed by the end of the season. From the moment the ships leave Dutch Harbor, the equipment is constantly being doused in freezing saltwater. Because of this, the first few seasons, the camera microphones were stock. I suggested that they replace those with good shotgun microphones. This has helped tremendously in getting the best sound that we can. I have been on long-running shows and find it interesting how things change during the run. Has this been your experience with Deadliest Catch? We’re currently in our eighth season (if you don’t count the threepart miniseries) and the crew is still focused on telling these stories and trying to make the best show we can. What I find so interesting and fun is the fact that, 10 years ago, if you walked into a party and shouted out, “Can anyone name a crab fisherman?” they would have looked at you like you were crazy. Do that today and the reaction would be quite different. I’m sure if you asked Captain Sig 10 years ago if he saw himself doing the talk-show circuit or having a role in a Pixar film, he would have thought you were crazy too! Nobody knew whom these people were and that they were risking their lives so that we could enjoy crab. Now there’s an appreciation for what they do.
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www.plus24.net CAS QUARTERLY
Have you ever counted the maximum number of “Bleeps” in any given episode? Bleeps are a funny thing. They average around 30–40 per episode. While we all know that these guys talk like fishermen, it can get trying at times if there isn’t a good reason for all the language. If there’s a conflict, great—that adds to the tension. But if every other word out of someone’s mouth is “F’in this” and “F’in that,” it doesn’t really add to the story—and it can become difficult to understand. If it’s at all possible, I’ll try to cut around the language, unless it’s an important part of the story. Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Will you still be mixing reality programming? Do you have a desire to move into the world of mixing for narrative? Great question! If you told me 10 years ago that I’d be here in my career, I probably wouldn’t have believed you! I enjoy the challenges of reality and non-fiction mixing and I hope I’m still doing it in 10 years. That said, I’d love the opportunity to work on other types of programming as well. You mix solo, as does Oscar winner Tom Fleischman, CAS. Do you think there is a trend toward one-man post mixing for sound? How has the technology influenced this for you? Would you prefer to mix within a team approach? And, if so, would you prefer working with dialogue, music or sound effects? I’ve always mixed solo. It was never a choice. I just came up through the ranks at post houses where the mixer did everything.
You were expected to be able to cut dialogue, music, FX and create original sound design if the client required it. I don’t need to read anyone’s mind and nobody has to read mine. I know how I want the mix to sound, so I can just jump in and do it. For me, mixing solo has become much easier with custom fader groups on the Icon and Eucon fader layouts. I can jump to any number of different fader layouts, depending on what I want to work on. It’s extremely fast and convenient. I really couldn’t see working without those features. Dialogue, Music and Effects. Each has a special role in telling a story. I enjoy working with each individually. But, I love when all the elements come together and create an emotional impact that is greater than the sum of their parts. I missed the Awards ceremony this year, but I keep hearing about “16-year-old” Bob. I assume it has something to do with your co-presenter? Can you elaborate? I had the pleasure of presenting at the CAS Awards with Catherine Bach (Daisy Duke). I really couldn’t believe that I was actually standing next to her. So before we read the nominees, I turned to her and said, “I’ve got to be honest with you. 16-year-old Bob is very happy right now!” I’m told that I turned bright red after that! She was delightful and took it all in stride. How about a family update? If work isn’t keeping me up nights, our two teenage boys are! •
Got Mix Assist? An Interview with Jon Tatooles b y Will H a n se n , C A S
Recently, I was working on a reality show for TLC called Randy to the Rescue. As this was my first real venture into the reality realm, with loads of mics out and unscripted dialogue, I thought it was quite convenient that the latest update for the 788T firmware included a new feature called Mix Assist. So I used it on the show with 12 channels and was pleasantly surprised with the results. So I sought out Sound Devices’ Jon Tatooles to see if he would like to tell us a little about the new feature. Who Are You and What Do You Do? I’m Jon Tatooles. I’m one of the co-founders of Sound Devices. It’s me and Matt Anderson and Jim Koomar. The three of us started the company back in 1998. And my background before Sound Devices, I managed Shure’s mixer and signal processing business. And one of the products that were part of that portfolio was the scme-10, the scm-410, the fp-410, and these were all automatic mixers. So this is a world that I was involved in before Sound Devices more than 13 years ago. Also, Matt Anderson, who is Sound Devices Chief Engineer, has an automatic mixer patent from 1999 with a tool called Intelli-Mix. So we’ve been in this world more from the reinforcement side. And you know obviously, we got into the production products. But in the back of our heads we knew that that technology existed and at some point there was going to be a place for it. What Is Mix Assist? Mix Assist is something we introduced in October of 2011. It allows us to give you both your iso’s pre fade as well as the ability to write a mix assisted recorded track post fade. It allows you to get pretty close to a good mix, especially when you have people all over the place and you got unscripted dialogue and such. What Market Do You Primarily See Mixers Using This Software Feature? It was designed for unsripted scenarios. Reality-style stuff, panel discussions, newsmagazines. That’s really its core set of uses. What Inspired You to Include This in Your New Firmware Update? A couple of things led to why we went down the Mix Assist path. And one of them was that some of these technologies have come off patent. So one of the first technologies was the Dugan gain sharing patent. Dan Dugan has his stand-alone rack piece, 22
and he’s since updated that and taken it from a pure analogue product into the digital world. Then, Shure had their patent called Itelli-Mix. In fact, they had a couple of different patents on a somewhat similar but different approach toward the gain sharing and analyzing background noise and such. So these technologies had gone off patent and no one had really brought them into the production world. People had talked about putting it into the production world but no one had. So essentially, we ported these analogue automatic mixing technologies into DSP. With fairly simple math. Well, it’s not that simple. So the motivation was this: here is a tool that had a lot of value in the multi-mic applications. It’s really not until you’re in the four-plus microphones and people talking and stepping on each other all over the place that you get into an application where Mix Assist is going to be a benefit. What Are the Gate on and off Times? 1ms on and 500ms off. Will You Ever Be Able to Adjust These Times? You know there are two schools of thought. We run into this oftentimes. On some of our analogue mixers, you have no control over the peak stop limiter. For instance, on the 552 you can’t control the peak stop limiter. And the reason is, we know exactly where that inputs going to clip. So we put the threshold where it’s at as that’s the right decision for us to make. Because we’ll make it so that you can’t clip the input and if you pound on it, then you run into the limiter. With these digital-based products, we can present a lot more control to the user. Sometimes that’s a good thing and sometimes that can be counterproductive. Like for instance with the 788, we’ve had users use the limiter like it was a compressor. A limiter is a safety tool. It’s not a tool that should be used to make dynamic changes. That’s something that should be done outside of the scope of the production recorder we think. That’s something that should be an editorial decision later on. So by presenting more power and having some of these features, we can end up presenting a feature that can end up biting someone in the butt. So there’s this balance of control. You know we could make it so that it’s just horrendous. Someone could really make it awkward and sound bad. So we want to find something that’s easy to use. You know we will certainly tune it and evolve it. Mix Assist is 1.0 right now.
What Factors Contribute to the Mix Assist’s Algorithm? There are two core elements to the technology. One is called the Noise Adaptive Threshold. So what this does is it’s listening in through each of the inputs, on an individual basis and based on each input’s gain and it’s listening for continuous background noise. There’s a certain energy that exists and you know the technology doesn’t listen but it’s looking at that energy or voltage if you will. And transients above that are able to activate a microphone. The next tool is called the Max Buss. And the Max Buss is looking among channel to channel to channel. And that’s looking and seeing that same waveform existing in other channels. So if it sees a waveform happening on channel one, it’s also happening on channel two. Well, if I have the amplitude of it higher only on channel one, then it’s going to activate only that channel and not the other. So Max Buss is looking at what channel is getting that transient higher than the other channels and that’s the one it’ll activate. And each transient is gonna be different so you can have multiple people talking and their channels would be active because their waveforms are going to look different. But the identical waveform, it’s going to be looking at that microphone has it in a higher amplitude so that channel will be active. And that’s all happening within DSP. Then there is obviously an attack time based that we’ve analyzed and tried to make it as simple as it can be. Is There Anything That You’re Looking to Resolve or Include in Future Updates of Mix Assist? Mix Assist is at version 1.0 right now. These are tools that can evolve and change. As we see people learning with it, we’ll learn through them and then we can adjust it and evolve it. So it’s certainly something that I think has a good benefit. I don’t think it’s for every situation and there are certainly some challenging acoustical environments that can fool Mix Assist. But if you got the right environment, Mix Assist can be a real benefit. What Would Be a Situation Where One Could Fool Mix Assist? I say if you’ve got other sounds happening on set other then dialogue, then Mix Assist is going to have a tough time. The Max Buss and the Noise Adaptive Threshold are designed specifically for speech-type waveforms. I like to think of Mix Assist as a very intelligent speech gate. It’s probably the best way to think about it. • CAS QUARTERLY
Downtime TO STRENGTHEN YOUR BODY b y P a u l Vik Ma rsh a ll, C A S
Are you constantly hunched over your mixing panel or counsel? Do you make repetitive motions pushing faders, punching buttons and twisting knobs? This article, the first in a three-part series, will help address these questions. The series puts its focus on strengthening the muscles you don’t use, while stretching the muscles that you do, to create a balance between the two. Part one will focus on the back and chest. Part two will concentrate on stretching and flexibility, written by James Berek, CAS and the third part is on ways to strengthen and condition the arms, legs and stomach. At the Basic Training Gym in Glendale, Calif., I spent an hour with Master Trainer Conrad Padilla. Padilla presented a simple workout for the muscle groups that I consider most affected by the way most mixers work. The workout is easy and
Part 1 inexpensive, and one in which mixers, production and post, can do during breaks and downtime on sets or in the studio. With more than 9,000 sessions with his clients, Padilla is an accomplished personal trainer. He became a Master Trainer at 24 Hour Fitness and his certifications include the National Academy of Sports Medicine, Aerobics and Fitness Association of America and several performance-enhancing certificates. Padilla’s philosophy on training is that the body has opposing muscle groups, (short and long muscles, i.e., pectorals/rhomboids, biceps/triceps, quadriceps/hamstrings). Maintaining a balance between these groups and strengthening the core (the navel area and stomach) is the key to a healthy body. Using proper breathing techniques and proper form, with an emphasis on consistency, these workouts will create a balanced body that is strong, flexible and energized. Let’s get started with The Row for the rhomboid muscles. The Workout Band, a length of rubber band/tubing with handles will be our tool to begin with. You can find these bands at most sports stores for under $20. Find a post or poll to rap the band around, or use a door attachment. Facing the post/ door, grab the handles and adjust the band height so that it is a
little lower than your shoulders. Find the tension in the band that is comfortable for you by moving backward—away from the post/door. If it feels too tight, move forward a bit and decrease the tension. There are three things to do before starting any exercise. 1) Get in the ready position. 2) Draw navel to spine and breath in. 3) Draw back. Every exercise has three phases. 1) Concentric exertion. 2) Isometric stabilization 3) Eccentric deceleration. As you exert, exhale and inhale while you are decelerating the tension. Breathing properly is extremely important when doing any exercise. Avoid the Valsalva maneuver, which is holding the breath as you pull, as this will bring your blood pressure up. With your hands in the handles, palms facing down and your arms straight in front of you in the ready position, draw the navel to the spine and inhale when you pull the handles to the sides of your shoulders. Stabilize for two seconds by squeezing the back muscles together, exhale and release very slowly to the starting position. This exercise works the back, biceps and core. Try doing 2–3 sets of 12–15 repetitions. Give yourself around a minute of recovery time between sets. Start slowly and if there is any discomfort, stop immediately. As you strengthen your muscles, increase your tension and repetitions. Now let’s start working the opposite muscle group of the rhomboids, the pectorals. The exercise is called the chest press. With the band in the same position on the post/door, have your back to the post, hands in the handles level with your
shoulders and walk forward to find a comfortable tension in the band. With your hands by your shoulders in the start position, palms down, inhale and draw your navel toward your spine or core. Exhale as you push your hands straight in front of you, arms fully extended. Stabilize for two seconds, inhale and decelerate to the starting position. Repeat. Start out by doing
2-3 sets of 12-15 repetitions. Again, find a tension in the band that is comfortable for you to work with. Remember to always breath correctly. You can do a lot with the Workout Band. Be creative. Padilla suggests that you try and work all of the opposing muscle groups giving you balance throughout your entire body. Take your time with consistent workouts and you will feel your chest and back getting stronger. In part three of the series, I will incorporate a large rubber ball and a dense foam roller/tube to work the stomach and to stretch out muscles. In order to strengthen your muscles, Padilla suggests mixers take advantage of their downtime and work out. Conrad Padilla would be happy to answer any questions you might have. He can be reached at padillafitness.com •
Greetings from lovely Nova Scotia. It has been a nutty season with my new shop, The Hideout Studios, posting more than 40 episodes of nationally aired TV series, a few features (Afghan Luke and Roller Town), as well as several docs since I opened the doors last August. My sound team on Afghan Luke took home the Best Sound Design Award at the 2011 Atlantic Film Festival and films that I mixed, opened and closed the festival this year. Good times indeed. The new studio has a new pair of HD Native rigs, as well as a 24 fader Avid Icon and a purpose built ADR room. If you are in the neighborhood, please drop by for chat or a sail around the harbour. –Brian Power CAS Mixer Patrick Hanson CAS, boom Trevor Stott, and utility Kevin H.B. Race are wrapping up Season 3 of The Vampire Diaries in beautiful Atlanta.
Gary D. Rogers CAS and Dan Hiland
CAS finished mixing the second season of The Walking Dead for the AMC network and the first season of The River for executive producer Steven Spielberg. They are currently mixing Season 1 of Hart of Dixie for the CW network and will start final mixing on the feature film The Collection.
John Pritchett CAS and boom op Dave Roberts, after some fits and starts, are doing Seth Rogen’s directorial debut, Cataclysm, for Sony. Shooting in, where else, New Orleans. A high-concept movie, Cataclysm stars Seth and a raft of his “pals” playing themselves. Promises to be scary and hilarious. It has been a great winter for Bob Bronow CAS. He is in the middle of mixing Ax Men Season 5, 1000 Ways to Die Season 6 and starting Deadliest Catch Season 8. Michael Keller CAS and Mike Prestwood Smith finished mixing The Hunger Games in 7.1 at Todd-AO in Hollywood.
Philip Perkins CAS completed mixes for Leo Chiang’s doc Mr. Cao Goes to Washington (which received a great review in Variety in March); Debbie Lum’s Seeking Asian Female, which pre26
miered at SXSW (both for PBS), assisted on the mix of Rich Wong’s romantic comedy feature Yes, We’re Open, and started production work on a new doc on cancer survivors for HeartLand Media (PBS).
Frank Stettner CAS has begun Season 3 of Boardwalk Empire. With him are
Sam Perry and Peter Fonda, booms, and Toussaint Kotright, utility.
Ron Bochar CAS completed mixing on the Big Beach feature film Nature Calls,
directed by Todd Rohal. The film premiered at SXSW.
Mathew Price CAS here. After filming
for two weeks in beautiful Puerto Rico, by the time you read this, my team and I (the always-astounding Frank Graziadei on boom and my longtime utility and second unit/backup mixer, the wonderful Timothia Sellers) are deep into Season 4 of the hit show White Collar for USA network. We’re also looking forward to two premieres on April 15: NYC 22, a new dramatic CBS series about rookie cops in Harlem and Girls, the new HBO series written, directed and starring the incomparable Lena Dunham. It’s about four post-collegiate friends finding their way in NYC—kind of an anti-Sex and the City. New York is officially a TV town now. From Universal Studios Sound: Frank Montaño has been on the near field mixing train as of late, working on Safe House, Battleship, and the 7.1 mix for the Blu-ray release of Jaws, later this year. Up next, Chris Jenkins and Frank team up to start on the feature Broken City, for director Allen Hughes. Kevin O’Connell and Beau Borders wrapped up American Reunion for Universal and are now waiting in the wings for the new and improved Dub Stage 6 remodel to be complete. Up next for the guys is Pitch Perfect for Gold Circle Films and director Jason Moore. Elmo Ponsdomenech and Bob Edmondson CAS are getting schedules in order to mix ABC’s new pilot Nashville and First Cut for CBS. Nello Torri CAS and Alan Decker CAS are mixing with the usual suspects, Franklin & Bash for TNT and Grimm for NBC. The guys are gearing up for a busy pilot season with Baby Big Shot for CBS and Do No Harm for NBC. John
W. Cook III CAS and Peter Nusbaum CAS are in Studio A also gearing up for the pilot storm, with Friday Night Dinner, Like Father & Malibu Country, and an untitled comedic pilot from Mindy Kaling. Mixers Pete Reale and Todd Morrissey are mixing Desperate Housewives and Law & Order: SVU for NBC. Up ahead, the guys will be mixing the pilot for Chicago Fire, the highly anticipated drama from Dick Wolf. Mixer Joe DeAngelis is mixing the final season of House, with supervising sound editor Brad North. Ken Teaney CAS and Alec St. John CAS have just completed Season 2 of Body of Proof for ABC Studios and are about to wrap Season 5 of the hit AMC show Mad Men. Next for us is the IMAX film To the Arctic for top IMAX producer Greg MacGillivray. Then it’s time to psych up for pilot season! Paul Vik Marshall CAS and his boom
operator Paul Leo Romo have been busy in the commercial world having worked on seven of the Super Bowl 46 spots. Their favorite was the Pepsi spot with Elton John. On the Samsung Galaxy spot, Marshall brought in CAS mixers Scott Jason Farr, Scott Harber & James Berek, boom operators Paul Leo Romo, Alister Mann, Tula Snoeck and utility Hansel Gonzales. At one time, we had more than 30 radio mics working on the Paramount lot. Thank you Phillip Palmer CAS for working with us. Between Glee and Dr. Phil, we had limited channels to work with on Block 21 and 22.
Tom Marks CAS and Gary Bourgeois CAS recently completed the mix for the documentary One Day on Earth, directed by Kyle Ruddick. Tom Marks and Fred Paragano started mixing Home Run, directed by David Boyd. Tom also worked with scoring mixer John Rodd on Tom Lowe’s documentary, Timescapes. Andy Hay CAS has been busy with sound design and mixing on It’s a Disaster, starring America Ferrera, David Cross and Julia Stiles, as well as supervising the incredibly charming feature drama 9 Full Moons, starring Amy Seimetz. Up next is sound design and mixing for Drake Doremus’ next fea-
ture for Indian Paintbrush/Paramount Vantage, following on the heels of last year’s success with Like Crazy, but before that, a well-earned trip to Whistler for some skiing and R&R!
Hi all—here we are again, out recording for a new sound effects project for Sound Ideas. I must say, we get into the weirdest locations and see some remarkable things. I wanted to share this picture (see the “The Lighter Side” for photo, ed.) of “pancaked” cars with you. The sound was unmistakable! –Brian Nimens, Sound Ideas
David Barr-Yaffe CAS, Billy King and
Alexandra Gallo have just finished Jennifer Love Hewitt’s The Client List and are starting Devious Maids for Marc Cherry and ABC. Then on to Goodwin Games for FOX before we go back to Season 2 of GCB. From Richard Branca CAS at Sony Pictures Post Production Facilities: Paul Massey CAS and David Giammarco are currently working on Spider-Man 4 at the Cary Grant Theater. Paul Massey, Deb Adair CAS and David Giammarco just finished Think Like a Man at the William Holden Theater. Also at the Holden Theater, Paul Ottoson and Tom Fleischman CAS completed Men in Black III. At the Kim Novak Theater, Rick Kline and Greg King finished Battleship. On Dub Stage 6, Rusty Smith and Bill Freesh CAS are currently mixing Justified and 90210. Steve Ticknor CAS and Bill Benton completed No One Lives on Dub Stage 7. Also on Dub Stage 7, Terry O’Bright CAS and Todd Becket are working on The Client List. On Dub Stage 11, Mark Linden CAS and Tara Paul CAS are dubbing Fairly Legal and The Simpsons. Fred Tator CAS and Bill Jackson continue to mix Breaking In and Awake on Dub Stage 12.
Audio-Technica’s BP4071L, BP4071 and BP4073 shotgun microphones offer stunningly clear, high-resolution sound quality and extremely focused pickup throughout the entire frequency range. These innovative mics are ideal for creating high-quality audio for broadcast, feature films, wildlife recording and theater sound reinforcement. Whatever your audio demands, experience more.
Larry Benjamin CAS and Kevin
Valentine of Smart Post Sound have been busy mixing Season 3 of The Good Wife on stages at Smart Post and Post Haste, as well as Ringer, also mixed at Post Haste. They wrapped a series for Cartoon network called Level Up in February and
mixed a TV movie called Firelight at Westwind Media. They mixed a movie directed by Rudolf Buitendach for Cannes called Dark Hearts, also at Smart Post. Finally, Jeff Haboush CAS, Larry Benjamin and Eric Justen mixed Act of Valor, recently in theaters. Spring is here: healthy and happy beginnings to everyone. The fun stuff has been all the travel for features I’ve been doing the last eight months: Armenia for Lost and Found in Armenia, Mississippi for Victor Salva’s Haunted (temp title Victor says), Indiana for Old Days, and soon heading off for Utah and Vegas on another feature. In Los Angeles, I did prod sound on White Frog—my fifth film with director Quentin Lee and Any Day Now, with director Travis Fine—a GREAT FILM btw. And Right Next Door, half of which took place in a bathroom—thankfully it was built on a set and not location! Lucky also to work with Vanessa Williams directing PSAs for BlackAids. A huge blast AND doing good things. Thank you and enjoy! –James Ridgley CAS
Joshua Anderson CAS just completed
mixing the first season of NBC’s musical drama Smash, with Gregg Harris on boom, Terence McCormack Maitland as second boom/utility, and Jason Stasium on playback operation. It was an exciting seven months, full of pre-records, live singing, 360-degree steadicam shots, and the always-challenging Times Square. Fortunately, the show had an amazing cast with incredible voices and a great crew. One of the highlights for the sound department was the opportunity to record Bernadette Peters singing live. Next up for Josh, Gregg, Terence and Jason, is the NBC pilot Notorious.
Dick Hansen CAS is filming Old Days,
an ensemble comedy about an actor going back to his hometown. We are filming in Newburgh, Indiana, where Michael Rosenbaum, the lead actor, director and writer, is from. Lenny Suwalski is booming for me on our third film together. On Disney Stage 6, Keith Rogers CAS and Scott Weber have been busy mixing Person of Interest and Alcatraz for Bad Robot Productions. Also mix28
ing the new series TRON: Uprising for Disney. Looking forward to mixing the ABC pilot Beauty and the Beast in April.
Fred Ginsburg CAS will be presenting a series of workshops on behalf of Audio Technica USA at the annual National Association of Broadcasters Convention in Las Vegas. Topics will include multitrack workflow for features and episodic television, as well as rigging lavaliers and wireless. In addition to Audio Technica microphone product, Fred will be demonstrating the Presonus 16.4.2 digital mixing panel and the Tascam HS-P82 multi-track recorder. Fred has also been working with the owner of Rock N Roller Multicarts, and they will be debuting a new version of the R12 designed especially for production sound. Chapman University and California State University Northridge have both invited Fred to continue teaching production sound next semester as an adjunct professor in their film schools. One of Fred’s many articles was recently published in Student Filmmaker Magazine. All members of the CAS are invited to email HYPERLINK “mailto:Fred@FilmTVsound.com” \t “_blank” Fred@FilmTVsound.com for a complimentary subscription to his educational website HYPERLINK “http://www.filmtvsound.com/” \t “_ blank” www.FilmTVsound.com. Stage 1 at Lotus Post has been very busy featuring Gary Coppola CAS and Stanley Johnston mixing Freaky Deaky for director Charles Matthau, Gary Coppola and Michael Perricone CAS mixing the Bradley Cooper and Dax Shepard starrrer Hit and Run, and Rick Ash mixing Varmit. Stage 2 had Michael Perricone mixing Campus Killer, starring Katee Sackhoff, Stanley Kastner CAS mixing Blaze You Out and Andy Hay CAS mixing Dose of Reality. On ADR Stage 4, Robert Redford was directing Julie Christie with John Graves behind the board, and Eric Maldin recorded the ADR for films Philosophers, Of Men and Mavericks, Campus Killer, Home Run Showdown and others. Karol Urban CAS and Mike Franklin were on Stage 3 mixing promos for Mission: Impossible 4, and Laird Fryer recording ADR for Tahi on Stage 5.
Agamemnon Andrianos CAS will complete Desperate Housewives Season 8, the final episodes, with boom operator Douglas Shamburger and sound utility/ boom operator Alex Names. It’s been an incredible eight years with an amazing crew! Heartfelt thanks to our producers, directors, actors, and fellow crew members who contributed to making a great soundtrack every day as we worked side by side on such a quality show. Grateful to all and will miss our camaraderie and great times together. Now on to the next adventure and sound recording project! Darryl L. Frank CAS writes: We just finished shooting The Last Stand, with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Forest Whitaker. We had a fun show with a lot of action on director Jee-woon Kim’s first English-speaking movie. This week we started Season 5 of Breaking Bad—too bad it will be our final season. What an amazing cast and crew, I don’t want it to end. Mac Ruth CAS is thrilled to be shooting
a dream-job documentary all up and down Argentina in the month of April with boom operator Peter Schulteisz. He’ll immediately thereafter be off to Belgrade, Serbia, for indie feature Therese Raquin, which is one of the better scripts to cross his plate. Hope everyone’s well and working this lovely spring.
Paul James Zahnley CAS has cut and
mixed a few shows in early 2012 including series pilot Nice Girls Crew, which debuted at the 30th San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival. He also mixed Search for the Head of John the Baptist for the National Geographic Channel. Paul continues to mix episodes of Aerial America for the Smithsonian Channel. On Stage 8 at Technicolor Paramount: Michael Colomby CAS has been dubbing The Secret Circle for CW, as well as a couple of episodes of Eastbound & Down Season 3 for HBO, with Adam Sawelson. Michael has also been working on the new rendition of Dallas for TNT with Bob Lacivita. Up next, Rizzoli & Isles Season 3.
Karol Urban CAS and Steve Urban
just completed premix of the independent feature animated film White Tiger Legend. In addition, the feature documentary One Manâ€™s Journey to Truth, mixed by Karol, has gotten picked up for Internet and DVD distribution. Karol is also utilizing her Spanish skills providing dialogue editorial services for Univision and FOX. Both Karol and Steve are also providing editorial and sound design for multiple series for Lifetime and National Geographic and are busy providing full mixing services for various BTS, theatrical trailers, ad campaigns, and broadcast promotional campaigns. Lately, itâ€™s been a nice run of feature films and series television for Buck Robinson CAS. He finished production mixing Lords of Salem, his fifth film with director Rob Zombie, at the end of 2011. Shot in Los Angeles and on location in Salem, Massachusetts, Buck was assisted by boom operators Cole Bluma and Ryan Baker, with Charlie German doing utility sound and playback. Following that, to begin 2012, the crew of Robinson, Bluma, and German completed Season 3 on the ABC Family series Make It or Break It, at Santa Clarita Studios. Buck then moved on to mix the thriller feature Not Safe for Work for Blumhouse Productions, with director Joe Johnson. Booming on the project was Joe Michalski and Charlie German. Michael Kaleta was the cable man. Also assisting was Seth Cooper. All filming was in Los Angeles. Next up, Cole Bluma and Charlie German will be back together with Robinson on the new series Bunheads, also for ABC Family. The drama, revolving around ballerinas, is to be shot at Sunset Gower Studios in Hollywood. Buck would also like to thank Tom Stasinis CAS and Brett Grant-Grierson CAS for second unit work on their respective shows, Community and Sons of Anarchy.
Peter Damski CAS took on yet another musical for the SCAD Performing Arts Department. This time around, it was Spring Awakening, with 30 wireless mics and an eight-piece band. His students assisted in changing over the console from a Soundcraft Studio 5, which was in ill repair, to a new Avid Venue SC-48 between performances.
CAS and Billy King flying Cirrus 14WK to Santa Barbara for lunch.
Acting like it’s no big deal, Local 695 members Charles Barnhart (far right), William Martel Jr., CAS (second from right), and Marlin George (third from right) spend the weekend with Johnny Depp (fourth from right), Paul McCartney (fifth from right, directing) and Wally Pfister (sixth from right, ( g , DP). )
ens Brian Nim share to wanted of re tu ic p this cars ” d e k “panca e h T . u o y h wit s a w sound ble! unmistaka
FFred d Ginsburg Gi b , CAS (an ( NRA–certified NRA ifi d Range R Safety Officer and Instructor) conducting a firearms orientation workshop for actors and filmmakers at the Panorama Sportsmans Club. When not shooting films, Fred is shooting....
“16-year-old” Bob Bronow, CAS was very happy to present at the CAS Awards with Catherine Bach (Daisy Duke)!
Samsung Superbowl ad crew, back row left to right: (blue jacket and sunglasses) utility sound - Lucien Eagle Jack, B Unit boom operator - Allister Mann (black beanie), B Unit sound mixer - Scott Jason Farr, CAS (State Trooper hat), C Unit sound mixer - Scott Harber, CAS (Boston hat). Middle row: Utility sound - Hansel Gonzalez, sound mixer - Paul Vik Marshall, CAS, C Unit boom op - Roslynne Snoeck, playback op - James Berek. Bottom row: A Unit boom op - Paul Romo
H Hard to find a good ccable man these days. SSusumu Tokunow at CBS Radford Studios. C
The Cinema Audio Society invites you to the
1st Annual CAS Family Picnic Sunday, July 15, 2012 11 a.m.–3:30 p.m. Park Center—Griffith Park, Los Angeles
Come join us and celebrate summer. All CAS members are welcome. This is a great opportunity to meet the members and their families. There will be food, drinks, fun games and a raffle giving away prizes. Best of all, it’s free! The picnic area is located in Park Center between the Los Angeles Zoo and the Los Feliz Park entrance. Once in the park, follow the CAS signs to our location. We will be off of Crystal Springs Drive down the hill from the Merry-Go-Round, near the tennis courts. Parking is up the hill behind the Merry-Go-Round.
Park Center, 4730 Crystal Springs Dr., Los Angeles, CA For directions, go to:
HYPERLINK “http://www.laparks.org/dos/parks/facility/parkCenter.htm” http://www.laparks.org/dos/parks/facility/parkCenter.htm Volunteers are welcome. Let us know if you can help by contacting us through the email or the telephone number below. Please RSVP by email to HYPERLINK “mailto:email@example.com” firstname.lastname@example.org or call Paul Vik Marshall, CAS at 323-273-4101
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Just look what youâ€™ve done. With your input, some pretty useful wireless tools have been created.
And, they have been put to use in the real world to see how they hold up. Youâ€™ve never held back any punches when it came to feedback, and we sincerely appreciate that. Please continue.
Advanced Wireless Systems
In this Issue: CAS Awards Got Mix Assist? Strengthening Muscles.