On Saturday, October 13, Mix, its parent company Future US, and host partner Sony Pictures Studios will welcome more than 500 sound for picture professionals, a wide range of industry sponsors, and dozens of expert panelists all focused on the tools and techniques that drive the sound for film and television markets—and that includes streaming these days.
What started five years ago with a focus on editing and mixing for the then-emerging immersive sound formats has grown to include a Production Sound Pavilion in the Barbra Streisand Scoring Stage, with its storied Parade of Carts and a focus on field recording through dialogue re-recording, and the introduction last year of the wildly popular Composers Lounge, where top film and television composers, in a living room-style format, discuss their craft artistically and technically.
Registration is open at mixsoundforfilm.com.
Here is a sneak peek at some of the events to be held that day, with updates to come in the following weeks.
Keynote Speaker: Scott Gershin
The past four years have seen some memorable keynote speeches, from Randy Thom’s talk of art to Mark Mangini’s tribute to sound as a storyteller. This year, in looking at the changing nature of post-production, and the influence of videogames and the coming of virtual reality, we asked the incomparable Scott Gershin to say a few words about how sound might shine in the coming years of interactive storytelling.
Gershin is an award-winning sound designer who has been active in the film and gaming community for more than two decades. With credits on films such as Pacific Rim, Hellboy 2, Chronicles of Riddick, Team America, Shrek, Star Trek and American Beauty as well as major games such as the Gears of War series, Epic Mickey, and the Resident Evil and Fable series, he has garnered an impressive number of awards and nominations.
Gershin has studied music since he was 10 years old and could easily be identified as that kid you grew up with who made sound effects and creature noises with his mouth. Little did he know it would lead him into a career doing just that. His talent for creating personalities with his voice has been tapped for such memorable movie characters as Flubber, Disney’s Herbie, Reapers in Blade II, the dragon in Shrek, Kirchek in Tarzan, and numerous characters and creatures in Pacific Rim, Hellboy II, Book of Life and PVZ Heroes, to name a few.
After attending Berklee College of Music, Gershin made a name for himself as one of the pioneers of audio technology in film and games. Using what he learned as a synth programmer and recording engineer in the music industry, he was one of the first to make use of computers to edit and design sound against picture. He has embraced technology to better help him tell stories through audio and take audiences on an immersive journey. Gershin describes what he does as a bit of an “audio photographer,” capturing the sounds of the world and of life and manipulating those sounds in new and exciting ways to bring the director’s vision to life.
Scott Gershin: At the Crossroads of Game and Film Audio, by Blair Jackson, March 1, 2007
Gershin worked at the acclaimed independent group Soundelux for 27 years as a sound supervisor and sound designer, and he was the founder and executive creative director of Soundelux Design Music Group. He also created departments and served as Creative Director at Formosa Interactive and the Soundlab at Technicolor.
Gershin has 31 MPSE Golden Reel nominations, with nine wins; one Emmy nomination; a BAFTA nomination for American Beauty; and four GANG awards for game sound.
Mix Panel Series
One of the main attractions each year is the expert panel series, held in the Lancaster Theater, focused on editing, mixing and technology. Panelists are listed on the website; here are the topics to be discussed:
Sound Editing for Animation Pre-Production Through the Final Mix
Presented by MPSE
A discussion of how sound takes the leading role in the creation of an animated project. From the pre-records used to create the visual animation of characters to the final soundtrack created completely from scratch to bring the visual story to life on screen. What are their workflows and creative thought processes? How do these processes and challenges vary from a typical live action project? We will hear from both feature and television sound supervisors and designers who have years of experience within the animation field.
The Audio Pipeline: Dialogue From Front to Back
Presented by CAS
A panel of established production and post-production professionals discuss current workflow, the way we were, and the path to the future.
The Business of Immersive: Technology and Process
Presented by Westlake Pro
The new streaming networks are demanding immersive audio as a deliverable, and it’s now expected that Hollywood releases will include a Dolby Atmos, DTS or Auro 3D version. To be a part of the present and future of sound for picture an audio post facility will need to convert to an immersive workflow. It’s not as expensive as one might think, and the return on investment can be significant. Our expert panel discusses the cost/benefits of outfitting a facility, the new distribution paradigms and the return on an investment in future-proofing a facility.
Held in the Anthony Quinn Theater, The Composers Lounge features one-on one conversations with top film and television composers discussing their art and technology in a living room-style environment, with television monitors instead of the big screen, and a high-end Meyer Sound System.
This year, confirmed composers include Nathan Barr and Paul Lipson, head of Formosa Interactive Group and one of the leading figures in videogame music.
Production Sound Pavilion
Held in the Barbra Streisand Scoring Stage, the Production Sound Pavilion hosts production sound mixers and features the ever-popular Parade of Carts, where film and television professionals bring in their carts and bags and explain their technologies, workflow and craft.
This year, the pavilion adds an afternoon panel discussion on “Ambisonic Sound Recording: The Future Is Back,” a panel of expert users and manufacturers discussing the return of the 3D Ambisonic recording method and its implications for cinema.
Thank You to Our Sponsors
Mix Presents Sound for Film & Television could not be produced without the support of our sponsors, who not only help to underwrite the cost of the event, but provide top programming that gets better every year. We thank them all.
Join Avid, a founding sponsor, as they once again take over the historic Cary Grant Theatre following the keynote speech. Throughout the day, Avid will be moderating a number of must-see presentations and panel discussions with the sound teams behind some of the industry’s biggest productions. (Note: Last year was the audio team behind Game of Thrones, the year before that, the sound team for Stranger Things.) The company will also host scheduled sessions for deep dives into Avid Pro Tools, Avid MTRX and Dolby Atmos.
Founding sponsor Dolby is one of the reasons that Mix Presents Sound for Film & Television was created, when back in 2013, with Dolby Atmos and immersive formats beginning to reach critical mass, the idea for an event took shape. Dolby has showcased its Cinema Tools, shown home-theater-style Dolby Atmos listening environments and educated the audience on the possibilities of true immersive sound. This year Dolby will take over the brand-new Theater 1, a mid-size Dolby Atmos sound design and mix room, and present demos from leading films and TV shows, as well as tutorials on Dolby Atmos workflow.
As a founding sponsor of Mix Presents Sound for Film, Yamaha/Steinberg has brought a host of post-production products to attendees over the years, including the powerful Nuage system, Nuendo and Cubase. This year, the company will showcase its market-leading Tools for VR and games, including a Composers Lounge discussion with Formosa Interactive Group head Paul Lipson on the expanding market for interactive sound, and the tools and techniques needed for object audio-based production.
Meyer Sound will host continuing demonstrations of a 9.1.6 immersive sound design suite in the Dub 15 stage at Sony Pictures Studios. The monitoring system will comprise Acheron Designer screen channel loudspeakers, Amie-Sub compact cinema subwoofers (main and surround), HMS-5 surrounds, and UP-4Slim overheads. Demo content will be provided by noted sound designer and re-recording mixer Will Files, whose credits include Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and Star Trek: Into Darkness, among many others.
In just a few short years, Formosa Group has risen from a small facility in Santa Monica to one of the world’s leading independent providers of post-production services, encompassing film, television, broadcast and interactive. Besides maintaining world-class facilities in Santa Monica, Burbank and North Hollywood, Formosa Group also represents dozens of top-end editors and re-recording mixers. Each year, Formosa Group sponsors and helps put together the popular Sound Reel Showcase, a night-time showing of 12 eight-minute reels from films likely to be contending for Oscars, MPSE Golden Reels and CAS Awards.
Through the years, Westlake Pro has evolved from a small sales division above Westlake Recording Studios into one of the leading pro audio retailers in the world. In recent years, Westlake Pro has made a big splash in high-end audio post-production studio design and installation, with an emphasis on immersive systems. Westlake Pro is the proud sponsor each year of the Technology Panel in the Mix Panel Series.
Sound Particles is a 3D CGI-like software for audio post-production, currently used in all major Hollywood studios. It allows a sound designer to create highly complex soundscapes, with thousands of sounds in a three-dimensional space. During Mix Sound for Film, you will be able to take a sneak peek at upcoming products: Sound Particles 2.0 (now with Windows support) and Sound Particles X, the new premium version of the software with GPU audio processing and CGI integration.
iZotope will be demonstrating RX a complete audio repair, noise reduction, and dialogue editing toolkit trusted by top engineers on countless movies and TV shows. RX Advanced gives users full control over audio, whether it’s removing unwanted noise or reverb, reshaping the intonation of dialogue performance, or editing immersive multichannel recordings.
Audionamix has been a fixture the past two years, as the company always seems to have new products available. This year, Audionamix will showcase IDC: Instant Dialogue Cleaner, a de-noiser that works by separating and preserving speech in real time, removing background interference—nature sounds, traffic noise, music and room ambience—with the single turn of a knob and without compromising the integrity of the dialogue. Audionamix will also be showing XTRAX Stems, which automatically separates any song into vocals, drums and remaining music stems.
Tonsturm, a small but mighty sound effects and software company out of Cologne, Germany, will show off V.1.5 of Whoosh, a sound design instrument built for the Reaktor Player, and the all-new Traveler, which precisely models the acoustic phenomenon of the Doppler effect, with a powerful and intuitive graphical path editor to determine a sound’s virtual movement.
Host Partner: Sony Pictures Studios
Mix Presents Sound for Film & Television has been a huge success in large part because of the venue, Sony Pictures Post-Production Studios, a one-of-a-kind facility that blends the glory of Hollywood sound with the leading edge of technology and art. Mix gives thanks to Sony for serving as Host Sponsor to the entire sound for film and television community.
Event Partner: CAS
The Cinema Audio Society was founded in 1964 for the purpose of sharing information with sound professionals in the motion picture and television industry. Active members are mixers (production and post-production, film and video) who work on feature films, television and commercials.
Event Partner: MPSE
Founded in 1953, the MPSE is an organization dedicated to improving the recognition of its members by educating the public and the rest of the filmmaking community as to the artistic merit of sound editing.