Once the picture is locked, it is turned over to an audio facility whose job it is to create one smooth and coherent layer of sound that will include every footstep, page turn and background movement in addition to the film’s main action.
We’re delighted to be in the safe hands of our all-hearing and all-seeing Supervising Sound Editor, Harry Barnes, under the auspices of Anvil Studios, based in Perivale and managed by Mike Anscombe. It is Harry’s job to cast his eyes and ears over all the dialogue and action in the film, and decide which lines will have to be re-recorded in sessions known as ADR or Additional Dialogue Recording, with the help of ADR Recordist David Sendall. This is because noise from the set, the equipment, traffic, wind, and other external factors often results in unusable production sound.
Not only does Harry focus on the main dialogue, he watches the film as a whole and decides with the Sound Effects Editor, Martin Cantwell, if any additional background sound must be recorded to enhance the quality of the audio and make it feel more authentic. These sounds are split into two main categories. The first, Foley, is the recording of everyday sounds from the swishing of clothing to page turns of the family recipe book, to pots and pans being used in the kitchen. Our Foley artists Jack Stew and Andrea King devise any number of imaginative techniques to create exact matches for these sounds.
The second type of sound recorded in post-production is of background actors, also known as ‘crowd’. While it is the production sound mixer’s responsibility to record the dialogue of the main actors, Harry will ensure any background artists are also represented in the final audio giving the film a luxuriously thick and genuine soundtrack. This involves casting a number of crowd artists whose accents and voice must represent, as accurately as possible, the background artists appearing in the film. And so the production team cast the net far and wide to recruit a number of voice artists – with authentic Leicester or Midlands accents – to spend an entire day endlessly chit-chatting, whooping, clapping and moving around. No easy task, but our troupe of artists delivered with great energy and enthusiasm – the hard part was ensuring their conversations were sufficiently ‘bland’!
Now that all the elements have been recorded to Harry’s satisfaction, we move onto the Final mix with re-recording mixers Gareth Bull and Adam Mendez.
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