Supervising sound editors Lon Bender and Victor Ray Ennis of Soundelux are among the nominees for best sound editing in the 84th Annual Academy Awards. This is the third Oscar nomination for Bender. He previously won the award, with Per Hallberg, in 1996 for Braveheart. This is the first Oscar nomination for Ennis. Winners will be announced Feb. 26 in Los Angeles.
“On behalf of everyone at CSS Studios, I would like to congratulate Lon, Victor and their team at Soundelux on this Oscar nomination,” said Robert C. Rosenthal, president of CSS Studios, Soundelux’s parent company. “I would also like to thank their peers in the Academy for recognizing their artistry. Drive is a unique movie and one that makes truly innovative use of sound. It represents creativity in motion picture sound at its peak.”
Drive, from FilmDistrict and Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn, tells the story of a Hollywood stunt car driver (Ryan Gosling) who moonlights as a wheelman and discovers there is a contract out on him following a robbery gone bad.
For Bender, Ennis and the film’s sound team, which included re-recording mixers Roberto Fernandez and Dave Paterson of CSS Studios’ Sound One facility in New York, the film presented many unusual sonic challenges. Although tacitly an action tale, the film is also highly cerebral, alternating between moments of intense realism and surreality as the audience is drawn into the main character’s head.
“Although there are some exciting car chases in this movie, it’s not really a ‘car chase,’ movie,” Bender explained. “It’s about a character and his relationship to the world. And it’s about a car that transports him through life. From a sound perspective, the film is sometimes soaring and intense and at other times, it forces you to lean forward and listen intently, but it all adds up to an experience you will never forget.”