Sound design is one of those categories dealing with films that often gets overlooked, especially when it comes to awards. When you watch a good movie, what do you notice first? You’re thinking about the plot, the characters, the actors and actresses, the setting and more. Sound design likely doesn’t creep up into your thoughts as you contemplate movies, and people are generally only reminded about it when they watch the Academy Awards.
The Oscars always recognizes the best in sound design, and then people are given a front row seat to some of the best sound design and sound editing in films. You’ll also hear sound design and sound editing referred to as ‘sound mixing.’ Did you watch the Academy Awards this year? If so, you saw that the new Star Wars movie was one of the movies where the sound design team was nominated.
One trend you’ll notice is that the best movies when it comes to sound design are often action movies. Action movies give the people working on them a chance to use all kinds of different sounds, especially loud sounds. Can you imagine what a movie like that would be if the sound mixing wasn’t done correctly?
Certainly, sound effects must be developed properly by artificial means at times, but you wouldn’t believe what some of these people do to get the sounds they want for certain movies. You can imagine that they go to great lengths to get everything just right. Sounds must not only be acquired, but they also must be manipulated to fit the needs of the film.
Sound design is used for more than just films of course, but it’s big in movies. And, as much as it needs to be recognized more, movies are one place where it is recognized nationally for at least one day.