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Capturing and creating historical
sounds for AMC’s The Terror

By Jennifer Walden

It’s September 1846. Two ships — the HMS Erebus and HMS Terror — are on an exploration to find the Northwest Passage to the Pacific Ocean. The expedition’s leader, British Royal Navy Captain Sir John Franklin, leaves the Erebus
to dine with Captain Francis Crozier aboard the Terror. A small crew rows Franklin
across the frigid, ice-choked Arctic Ocean that lies north of Canada’s mainland to the other vessel.

The opening overhead shot of the two ships in AMC’s new series The Terror gives the audience an idea of just how large those ice chunks are in comparison with the ships. It’s a stunning view of the harsh environment, a view that was completely achieved with CGI and visual effects because this series was actually shot on a soundstage at Stern Film Studio, north of Budapest, Hungary.

Emmy- and BAFTA-award-winning supervising sound editor Lee Walpole, of Boom Post in London, says the first cut he got of that scene lacked the VFX, and therefore required a bit of imagination. “You have this shot above the ships looking down, and you see this massive green floor of the studio and someone dressed in a green suit pushing this boat across the floor. Then we got the incredible CGI, and you’d never know how it looked in that first cut. Ultimately, mostly everything in The Terror had to be imagined, recorded, treated and designed specifically for the show,” he says.

Sound plays a huge role in the show. Everything you hear (except dialogue) was created in post — the constant Arctic winds, the footsteps out on the packed ice and walking around on the ship, the persistent all-male murmur of 70 crew members living in a 300-foot space, the boat creaks, the ice groans and, of course, the creature sounds. The environmental sounds sell the harsh reality of the expedition.

Thanks to the sound and the CGI, you’d never know this show was shot on a soundstage. “It’s not often that we get a chance to ‘world-create’ to that extent and in that fashion,” explains Walpole. “The sound isn’t just there in the background supporting the story. Sound becomes a principal character of the show.”

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A conversation with film and TV
editor Brian A. Kates

By Amy Leland

Calling on his experience cutting a variety of genres, this editor shares his tips for success.

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Review: Warren Eagles’ Blackmagic Resolve training
By Brady Betzel

This colorist's online course digs deep into all
the offerings within Resolve 14.

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High-performance flash
storage at NAB 2018

By Tom Coughlin

Point 360 grows team with senior colorist Charlie Tucker

Lindsay Seguin upped
to EP at NYC’s FuseFX

Behind the Title: Lucky Post editor Elizabeth V. Moore

Editorial and post boutique Hiatus opens in Detroit

HPA begins call for entries: Engineering Excellence Award

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