Saturday, April 21, 2007

Happy Earth Day

Happy Earth Day to us...
Happy Earth Day to us...
The Green Chain has linked up with a distributor for Canada -- Christal Films.
Christal just announced that they've picked up three new environmentally themed projects -- Alastair Fothergill's documentary Earth, Velcrow Ripper's FierceLight: When Spirit Meets Action, the follow-up to his Genie Award winner Scared Sacred and... drum roll please... The Green Chain...
I met Velcrow at the Genies in Toronto last year, just after he picked up his trophy.
A few minutes later I ran into my old friend, Babz Chula, who was also nominated for an award that night. When I told Babz about The Green Chain, she said it was a shame that I didn't have a part for her. "I'm an old hippie logging protester," said Babz.
I almost cast her on the spot.
Months later Velcrow kindly offered to provide some of his footage for us to use as transitions for the movie. We didn't end up needing his work but... I guess we're finally working together. Sort of.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Mix Masters

We have audio!
The Green Chain moved into Post Modern Sound this week and our post team -- Jana Fritsch (editor), Darron Leiren-Young (coordinator) and I -- moved in with our mix masters. So we got to watch, listen and work with Gael MacLean (sound designer), Mark Hensley (head mixer) and Don Mann (effects/foley/ambience mixer).
It was wild seeing the movie on a big screen, hearing it on a half dozen speakers and layering in the dialogue, foley and effects.
And it was even wilder to realize we're almost done...
Mixing was a new adventure for me. I've been involved in producing three albums and I've done a fair bit of radio work where I’ve seen foley artists in action, but this was the first time I've had the chance to play with the sound on screen. It was amazing working with audio to find new ways to tell our story and capture the worlds of each scene.
On our first day of shooting, Brendan Fletcher was fifty feet up a tree. During the night shoot, coyotes started howling at him. Brendan howled back. After I said "clear-cut" our sound man tried to capture the coyote howls -- but I guess they'd recognized Brendan as the alpha dog and run off. Now the coyotes are back, sounding exactly like they did that night.
But the mosquito that decided to take up residence in front of our boom microphone for a large portion of my favourite take of Scott McNeil's performance has finally been swatted.
And I've been introduced to a dozen subtle variations in the sounds of silence.