SMPTE Hollywood will delve into the intricacies of remastering classic films for modern theaters equipped with immersive sound systems at its May meeting. Sony Pictures’ Brian Vessa and Warner Bros. Discovery’s Doug Mountain will discuss the artistic and technical hurdles involved in creating enhanced, immersive soundtracks for older studio films.
The program is being produced by Steven B. Cohen and Linda Rosner. Cohen will moderate the discussion scheduled for May 25th at 6:00PM in the Linwood Dunn Theater in Hollywood. The event is free.
Preparing classic films for screening in modern theaters, where audiences expect immersive sound experiences, can be complex and challenging. Research may be required to locate the best source elements, which often need extensive restoration. Audio sources may include mono composite or DME stem tracks, along with stereo, LCR or 5.1 stems. New sound elements may need to be created before it’s all edited and mixed in multitrack and immersive formats. Audio processing SW with AI components have also appeared to assist in the process.
Vessa and Mountain will explore this topic in the context of recent restoration work at Sony Pictures and Warner Bros. They will also present samples of that work, played through the Linwood Dunn Theater’s 7.1 sound system.
Brian Vessa, Executive Director of Digital Audio Mastering, Sony Pictures, is a dedicated audio professional with over 35 years of industry experience. After attending UCLA Engineering School, he became a recording engineer, producing albums and recording orchestras. He transitioned into film post as a music editor and sound editor and then became a re-recording mixer at Cannon Films and MGM. He later handled audio restoration at NT Audio before joining Sony Pictures in 1998. Vessa is a member of the AMPAS Sound Branch and AES, and is a Fellow of SMPTE. He is the founding chair of the SMPTE TC-25CSS Technology Committee on Cinema Sound Systems and serves on many SMPTE and AES committees.
Doug Mountain, Supervising Sound Editor/Re-Recording Mixer, Warner Bros. Post Production Creative Services, has been recording, editing and mixing audio for film, television and music for over 40 years. At Warner Bros., he developed a methodology for restoring and up-mixing classic features and manages up-mixes for 4K restorations in ATMOS. His first major release for the studio was Antoine Fuqua’s Training Day. Other notable restorations include Twister, Little Shop of Horrors, Superman (4K box set), Enter the Dragon, National Lampoon’s Vacation, You’ve Got Mail, Rebel Without a Cause, East of Eden, Cool Hand Luke, Rio Bravo and The Maltese Falcon. Prior to his restoration work, Mountain was a sound editor and engineer for many years. He also served as a consulting engineer for the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS), including sound design and engineering for the Grammys Awards for 26 years.
Steven B. Cohen, Senior Sales Director, HCLTech, has been working in media for over 45 years, and is recognized as a leading motion picture technologist and tool builder. In his current role, he supports digital transformation across platforms and products for media related companies. He began his career as a freelancer in IATSE Locals 160 and 695 where he was involved in projection, sound and video engineering. His varied career also includes such roles as member of the 1984 Olympics broadcast team, ADR/Foley and re-recording mixer, executive producer of the documentary The Cutting Edge: The Magic of Movie Editing, and specialist in remote collaboration, digital dailies, digital screening and digital cinema.
Who: SMPTE Hollywood
What: Remastering Feature Films for Immersive Sound Environments
When: Thursday, May 25. 6:00 pm.
Where: The Linwood Dunn Theater, 1313 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90028
6:00 PM Networking Reception
7:00 PM Program Begins
As always, SMPTE meetings are free and open to all, even non-members. Each guest must register separately.
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