Dolby Institute Podcast Series

  • Conversations with Sound Artists: Season 4

    In this series of episodes, join Dolby Institute director Glenn Kiser in conversation with the creative teams behind the sound and music of some of the biggest films of the year, including Roma, A Star is Born, First Man and Black Panther.

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      About the Artists and Their Podcasts

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      Episode 1 - A STAR IS BORN

      Production sound mixer Steve Morrow, Grammy-winning music mixer Nick Baxter, and re-recording mixer Dean Zupancic talk about grabbing crowd scenes between sets at the Stagecoach and Glastonbury music festivals, how doing impulse responses in each of the venues allowed them to recreate the sound of the arenas in postproduction, and how Bradley Cooper was not your typical first-time director.

      “The movie is shot from stage, as if you were part of the band, and [Dolby Atmos] allows you to be closer to the drums or closer to the bass guitar, to be part of the stage, and I think the audience feels that.” -Steve Morrow


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      Episode 2 - BLACK PANTHER

      Composer Ludwig Göransson and supervising sound editor Steve Boeddeker talk about the collaboration of sound design and score in Black Panther, the integration of African music into a traditional symphonic score, and how the sound design of futuristic Wakanda technology and weaponry is influenced by West African sounds (like a bird becoming the sound of a passing spaceship).


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      Episode 3 - FIRST MAN

      Academy Award- and Grammy-winning composer Justin Hurwitz, sound supervisor and re-recording mixer Ai-Ling Lee, sound supervisor Mildred Iatrou, re-recording mixer Frank Montaño, re-recording mixer Jon Taylor, and Academy Award-winning picture editor Tom Cross discuss how the film’s documentary look (it was filmed in Super-16mm) affected the approach to sound and music, how the sound elements contributed to the understanding of how dangerous the early space flights were, and why it was important to focus on the sound of an errant fly in the space capsule.

      “ [Director] Damien [Chazelle] really wanted my picture editing to make room for sound. So I would set up an edit where we would see the rivets in the ships, I would have cut-aways to gauges and the walls of these tiny capsules, and those would be the places where we would have Ai-Ling’s amazing sounds of the creaks and the groans of the ship, and we’ll answer that with the looks on the faces of the astronauts, feeling the sense of dread that they’re about to be launched.” -Tom Cross


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      Episode 4 - ROMA

      Academy Award-winning sound supervisor and re-recording mixer Skip Lievsay talks about the extraordinary sound work behind director Alfonso Cuarón’s epic black-and-white film about his own childhood in 1970s Mexico City. Skip talks about how not having a musical score keeps the audience guessing what will happen next, why it was important to Cuarón to have the dialog emanate not just from the screen channels but from all around the audience, the stunning five-day loop group recording session with 350 actors, and the 70-day final mix of the film.

    • Dolby Oscars Gutter Image

      Dolby at the Oscars

      Go behind the scenes to discover how the year's best films used the magic of Dolby technology.

    • Oscars® Edition Podcast Series

      In these podcasts with Oscar nominees and winners, sound designers talk about the creation of the sound design for the films, their collaboration with the music department and rerecording mixers, and the challenges of managing the logistics and aesthetics of their films.

  • Conversations with Sound Artists: Season 3

    In this series of six episodes, we focus on the long-time collaboration of some of the leading directors and their sound supervisors working today. These remarkable directors talk about the importance of sound to the films, and how they work with sound design and music. Conversations include Edgar Wright & Julian Slater; Darren Aronofsky & Craig Henighan; Matt Reeves with Michael Giacchino, Will Files, & Douglas Murray; Joe Wright & Craig Berkey; and others…

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      About the Artists and Their Podcasts

      Edgar Wright and Julian Slater Episode 1 — Director Edgar Wright & Sound supervisor Julian Slater

      Writer/director Edgar Wright joins sound designer Julian Slater in conversation about their remarkable five film collaboration, starting with Shawn of the Dead and continuing through their most recent film, Baby Driver. In this episode you’ll learn why Wright records sound on location scouts, dissect the sonic components of the infamous “Tequila” shoot-out scene from Baby Driver, and hear why Julian Slater feels Dolby Atmos was designed for the film.


      Richard King Episode 2 — Sound supervisor Richard King talks about his collaboration with director Christopher Nolan

      Three-time Academy Award winning sound supervisor Richard King discusses his remarkable collaboration with the director Christopher Nolan, which began with The Prestige and has continued through this summer’s Dunkirk. Richard talks about creating the sirens of the German dive-bomber planes, and addresses some of the controversies of Nolan’s mixes. He also touches on working with other directors including Paul Thomas Anderson, Sam Shepard, and Nicolas Roeg. Richard also answers questions from other sound designers.


      Darren Aronofsky and Craig Henighan Episode 3 — Director Darren Aronofsky & Sound supervisor Craig Henighan

      Darren Aronofsky is one of the most innovative and boundary-pushing directors working in cinema. Join him in conversation with his longtime sound supervisor Craig Henighan as they discuss their work on Requiem for a Dream, The Fountain, Black Swan, Noah, and mother! In this episode Aronofsky talks about how mother! ended up without a musical score, creating the character of the house, and how each element of the track is deliberately crafted.


      Joe Wright and Craig Berkey Episode 4 — Director Joe Wright & Sound supervisor Craig Berkey

      Director Joe Wright and his sound supervisor Craig Berkey talk about using sound design to build worlds as diverse as Churchill’s World War II London in Darkest Hour, the synesthezia of a homeless schizophrenic in The Soloist, or a fantastic Neverland in Pan. Wright and Berkey explore why recording Foley in the real Churchill war rooms was important, how working in the London rave scene after college influenced Wright’s use of sound, and why having the score to play for the actors on set is important.


      Matt Michael Will Douglas Episode 5 — Director Matt Reeves, Composer Michael Giacchino, Sound supervisor Will Files, and Sound supervisor Douglas Murray

      Director Matt Reeves joins sound supervisors Will Files & Douglas Murray, and composer Michael Giacchino in conversation about their four-film collaboration, starting with Cloverfield and culminating with this summer’s War for the Planet of the Apes. The artists discuss the unique challenges of utilizing the vocalizations of the human actors for the apes, how the trailer for Cloverfield drove the movie and the challenge of making a scary monster movie with no musical score, and why Michael Giacchino originally did not want to write the score for Let Me In.


      Carter and Skip Episode 6 — Composer Carter Burwell and Sound supervisor Skip Lievsay talk about working with the Coen brothers

      Composer Carter Burwell and sound designer/mixer Skip Lievsay talk about their remarkable 30-year collaboration with the Coen Brothers and share stories starting with Blood Simple in 1985 and continuing through all 17 of the Coen’s films. Scenes are discussed from Raising Arizona, Miller’s Crossing, The Man Who Wasn’t There, Burn After Reading, and you’ll learn how it turns out there is actually musical score in No Country for Old Men.

    • Oscars® Edition Podcast Series

      In these podcasts with Oscar nominees and winners, sound designers talk about the creation of the sound design for the films, their collaboration with the music department and rerecording mixers, and the challenges of managing the logistics and aesthetics of their films.

    • Dolby Oscars Gutter Image

      Dolby at the Oscars

      Go behind the scenes to discover how the year's best films used the magic of Dolby technology.

  • Conversations with Sound Artists: Season 2

    Season 2 of our podcast collection focuses on storytelling with sound. We speak with leading artists who create sound design for Broadway shows, virtual reality, and installation art pieces.

    • About the Artists and Their Podcasts

      Nevin SteinbergEpisode 1—Nevin Steinberg: The Sound of Hamilton

      Leading Broadway sound designer Nevin Steinberg discusses his work on hit shows including Hamilton, Bright Star, The Full Monty, and Spamalot. He tells us why he doesn't listen to the cast albums of his shows, the trials of redesigning theatre sound for touring companies, coming trends in Broadway sound design, and his experiences working with such legendary artists as Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mike Nichols, Steve Martin, and Edie Brickell.


      Tim GedemerEpisode 2—Tim Gedemer: Sound for VR

      Tim Gedemer, one of the most experienced artists working in sound for virtual reality with collaborations with studios including Jaunt, Specular Theory, and others, joins us to discuss the current state of sound for VR. We discuss the crazy first days of full spatial audio for the initial wave of VR projects, and why traditional filmmakers tend to stumble in their first VR experiences. Tim also provides a step-by-step discussion of how sound for VR works, from production capture through to the frustration of having to take off the headset so you can see the mixing console. He also discusses some of his most successful collaborations, and the differences between audio for cinematic, game-based, and live VR experiences.


      Sophie Clements Episode 3—Sophie Clements: Sound and Visual Art

      Visual artist Sophie Clements joins her longtime sound design/music collaborator Jo Wills to discuss their site-specific piece Attempting to Delay the Inevitable, an installation at the Dolby Gallery; the role of sound in her visual art pieces; why computer-graphics images would never work in her art; and how sound and image collaborate to create wonder, awe, and seduction in the audience. We're joined for this conversation by Kevin Byrd, Head of Visual Experiences at Dolby.
      Sophie Clements Dolby Installation Details
      Sophie Clements Dolby Gallery Event
      Kevin Byrd Art Installation Details  


      John RoeschEpisode 4—John Roesch: The Art of Foley

      Legendary Foley artist John Roesch discusses his more than 30-year career performing sounds for films including E.T., Back to the Future, The Dark Knight, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and Inception; the challenge of performing Foley for rainy scenes; why Foley can't come from an effects library; and how you walk steps for a Transformer.


      Jad AbumradEpisode 5—Jad Abumrad: The Sound of Radiolab

      Radiolab is one of the most distinctive sounding shows in the radio and podcast world. In this episode, the creator and co-host of the show, Jad Abumrad, talks about how he uses music as a metaphor to explore abstract topics like what a manta shrimp sees when it looks at a rainbow, why it's important to drop into the story midstream, why he deliberately disrespects the boundary between sound effects and music, and how he aspires to tell complex stories without words.


      Ryan CooglerEpisode 6—Ryan Coogler: The sound and music of Creed and Fruitvale Station

      In this special podcast presentation of our recent Dolby Institute master class at the Los Angeles Film Festival, writer/director Ryan Coogler is joined by his composer Ludwig Göransson and sound designer Steve Boeddeker to present clips and discuss their use of sound and music in Creed and Fruitvale Station.


      Episode 7—Walter Murch: Cinema Sound Design and Film Editing (Part 1)

      Three-time Academy Award-winner Walter Murch joins the “Conversations with Sound Artists” podcast. In part one of our talk, Walter takes questions from other leading sound designers Ren Klyce and Gary Rydstrom about his work, talks about how documentary film has affected modern cinema style, discusses his work in Apocalypse Now and The Conversation, and ends the episode with a discussion of the use of music in The Godfather and The English Patient.


      Walter MurchEpisode 8—Walter Murch: Cinema Sound Design and Film Editing (Part 2)

      Much like The Godfather, our talk with Walter Murch was simply too epic to be contained in one podcast. In part two of our conversation, fellow sound designers Randy Thom and Chris Foster pose questions to Walter, we discuss the state of cinema sound before and after Apocalypse Now, why film school can be a good idea, and how you can underline a character’s emotional state with carefully chosen sound effects.

    • Oscars® Edition Podcast Series

      In these podcasts with Oscar nominees and winners, sound designers talk about the creation of the sound design for the films, their collaboration with the music department and rerecording mixers, and the challenges of managing the logistics and aesthetics of their films.

    • Dolby Oscars Gutter Image

      Dolby at the Oscars

      Go behind the scenes to discover how the year's best films used the magic of Dolby technology.

  • Conversations with Sound Artists: Season 1

    In each episode, the artist talks with the Dolby Institute's Glenn Kiser and SoundWorks Collection's Michael Coleman about the challenges and opportunities the artist faced while building the soundscapes you enjoy.

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      About the Artists and Their Podcasts

      Randy Thom - Dolby Institute PodcastsEpisode 1—Randy Thom: Writing for Sound

      Randy Thom, director of sound design at Skywalker Sound, discusses how writers and directors can use sound as a tool to tell their stories, the importance of Apocalypse Now to modern sound design, his work with director Robert Zemeckis on Cast Away, and more.


      Naughty Dog StudiosEpisode 2—Rob Krekel and Phillip Kovats of Naughty Dog Studios: Video Game Sound Design

      Game soundtracks are no longer about the beeps and bloops of our childhood past. Explore sound design from Rob Krekel and Phillip Kovats of Naughty Dog Studios, one of the most advanced video game production houses in the world. Playing video games isn't just about what you see on the screen, it's about what you hear around you—and in the surrounds.


      Coll AndersonEpisode 3—Coll Anderson: Creative Sound for Documentaries

      Creative sound design is important in documentaries, even though it's rarely the first thing that audiences think about. Sound designer/mixer Coll Anderson discusses the role that creative postproduction sound can serve in telling nonnarrative stories.


      Anna BehlmerEpisode 4—Anna Behlmer: The Art of Sound Mixing

      Ten-time Academy Award® nominee Anna Behlmer talks about being one of the first female mixers in the movie business, strategies for handling a nervous director, and why you will always find colored Sharpie pens on a mixing stage.


      Gwen Yates WhittleEpisode 5—Gwen Yates Whittle: Dialogue Editing and Automatic Dialogue Replacement (ADR)

      In this episode, two-time Academy Award nominee Gwen Yates Whittle talks with Glenn Kiser about why director George Lucas thinks dialogue editing is one of the most important parts of the process.


      Dan ColmanEpisode 6—Daniel Colman: Sound for Television

      In discussing his work on Battlestar Galactica and Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Emmy® award-winning sound designer Daniel Colman talks about why musicians make the best sound designers and the challenges of living within the rules of television’s dynamic range.

      Learn more about this SoundWorks podcast series.

    • Oscars® Edition Podcast Series

      In these podcasts with Oscar nominees and winners, sound designers talk about the creation of the sound design for the films, their collaboration with the music department and rerecording mixers, and the challenges of managing the logistics and aesthetics of their films.

    • Dolby Oscars Gutter Image

      Dolby at the Oscars

      Go behind the scenes to discover how the year's best films used the magic of Dolby technology.