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Posted by on Oct 19, 2011 | 1 comment

Ben Burtt’s Sound Lab for “Forbidden Planet”: Artifacts from the Krell

Ben Burtt explains how the electronic score of “Forbidden Planet” was created. The video is at the right side of this page.

Prior to the screening, Oscar-winning visual effects supervisor Craig Barron and Oscar-winning sound designer Ben Burtt investigated some of the secrets behind the making of the film. Barron examined the film’s breakthrough effects sequences that used miniatures and matte paintings, as well as explored how Joshua Meador created his animated “id monster” effect and combined it with live-action photography. Burtt explained how the electronic score was created, using newly discovered source tapes from the film’s composers, Louis and Bebe Barron (no relation to Craig).

via @vfxblog / @usoproject

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Posted by on Sep 29, 2011 | 0 comments

ARTSEDGE: Ben Burtt on The Sounds of “Star Wars”

This is one of a series of podcasts exploring the ways sound and sound effects can be used to help bring stories to life.

Meet Ben Burtt, Sound Designer for films like Star Wars,Raiders of the Lost Ark and WALL-E. Learn how he comes up with sounds that complement the amazing things seen on the silver screen – from laser blasts to whirring, buzzing lightsabers. Find out the story behind some of his signature effects and how he first got interested in sound design.

Listen here.

via @usoproject

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Posted by on May 24, 2011 | 0 comments

Scott Morton on Combat Audio for “Star Wars: The Old Republic”

New article at the official website of “Star Wars: The Old Republic”, featuring sound designer Scott Morton.

Hi, my name’s Scott Morton, and I’m one of the audio designers who helps create the soundscape for Star Wars™: The Old Republic™. I spend half my time coming up with new sounds for different parts of the game (explosions!), and the other half conceptualizing technical approaches for getting sound and music playing in the game engine. The art of sound design can sometimes be a little mysterious; audio is always a supporting element and tends to be secondary to visuals in the player’s mind. Yet audio’s importance in helping craft the aesthetic feel of a player’s actions and experiences shouldn’t be underestimated.

Continue reading…

Via @soundesignblog

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Posted by on Apr 28, 2011 | 0 comments

Rodney Gates Special: Coming Full Circle – Spearheading “Clone Wars Adventures”

[Written by Rodney Gates for Designing Sound]

It seems perfectly fitting that with the Star Wars films being such an influence for me as a Sound Designer, when the opportunity came up to become the Lead on “Clone Wars Adventures”, a joint venture between Sony Online Entertainment and Lucasarts, it was hard to resist.

Hit the Ground Running

When I started on the game, it was just a month away from its official prototype milestone. Yikes! Except for a couple of temp blaster shots playing in a tower defense minigame, the rest of it was completely void of sound. Plenty to do as I was the only one working on it.

I quickly became acquainted with Christopher Denman and Darragh O’Farrell over at Lucasarts, who began providing assets to me. Now, there is a level of excitement associated with this as original, digitized recordings of a lot Ben Burtt’s work came across the FTP. To be able to listen to the raw power window servo recordings that are the basis of R2-D2 & C-3PO’s movement in the films, or some of the lightsaber elements in their raw form was priceless. When I got R2 rolling around in the game, chirping away, that simple moment felt full-circle for me. I just sat back and smiled.

So, with a little bit of luck and some ridiculous temp voiceover, everything made it in by the December 19th prototype date – to a resounding success. The team knocked it out of the park!

Now here was the rub. This game had to launch the same week as Season 3’s premiere, which was the following September. Less than a year of development time? I wasn’t sure it could happen. Then again, it was a very different and ultimately simpler game than “Transformers: War For Cybertron”, which only had an 18-month cycle, so I wondered.

The holidays came and went and shortly thereafter things became quite busy…too busy for one person to continue handling. When June rolled around, I became San Diego’s Audio Director, so I immediately changed the way our local team was split up and immediately threw everyone onto the game. The three of us managed to get all of the sound, music editing, and dialog recorded and in for the September deadline, even while my wife and I were busy having our second baby the same week. Talk about pressure!

“Clone Wars Adventures” was one of the best-produced projects SOE has had to date, hitting all of its milestones easily and pleasing everyone at both Sony and Lucasarts. It continues to rise in popularity week after week, keeping in lock-step with the series as it airs.

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