Game of Thrones Sound Replacement: Recording Non-Verbal Vocals in the Studio

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Today, 23/7/15, Bran and I had the Raven studio and liveroom booked to record some of the vital sound effects for the Game of Thrones scene. Neither of us had used the Raven before and it took us longer than expected to figure out how to supply our C414 with phantom power but we got there eventually!

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The main sounds we wanted to record during that session were of a vocal nature i.e. grunts, yells, screams, gasps etc. The grunts for the people physically exerting themselves and being hit whilst sword fighting etc. and the yells, screams and gasps were mainly for members of the crowd. Though Ananada and Lisa captured a lot of crowd sound and appropriate ambience at the Abbey Medieval Festival, we needed some more particular vocals for the camera shots of different parts of the crowd when people are yelling and booing etc.

We started with Bran doing a few yells, screams and general dying sounds. One way we were able to capture really good physical exertion sounds was for Bran to pick up a stool in swing it around. Conveniently, Ananda popped into the studio to see what we were up to. We were able to get her to do the same thing for us to record i.e. yells, screams and death sounds (no chair lifting). I jumped into the liveroom afterwards to do some more of the same so we had a wider variety of voices. Our plan is to get some of our peers to do the same for us as these types of sounds are quite a feature of the clip and there are a few different characters featured in it. Obviously, for continuity’s sake it will be best to have quite a few different voices providing these types of vocal sounds.IMG_1231

Another factor of sound replacement is ADR (Automated Dialogue Replacement). As discussed in one of my previous blogs, there isn’t much dialogue to this particular scene, however, we have decided to “employ” a voice actor recommended to us by a few of our peers who have taken part in film and games projects requiring voice acting. All but one of the speaking actors in the scene are male. We’ve discussed with Duncan (the voice actor) his abilities so far as doing different voices goes and he’s IMG_1235thinking he should be able to do quite a few different but appropriate voices for us. So hopefully the last thing we needed to sort out was a female voice actor for the part of Daenerys Targaryen. She only speaks a single word at two different times during the scene so I thought that I might as well give it a go while we were in the studio. After watching and listening to her lines a few times I was ready for recording. The two different words are only two syllables and one syllable long so we decided there was little need for an audio or visual cue while recording. Hopefully my lines are usable in the end!IMG_1228

All-in-all it was a successful recording session. We captured more than I anticipated we would. Both Bran and I have recorded a few sound effects at home but we still have to capture more. And of course there’s the editing stage after that. We’ve done more than enough to be placing the sounds with the video in Pro Tools so our plan is for Bran to start doing that while I record some more sound effects.

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