Ben Burtt Leaves Lucasfilm for Pixar

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Jeff Jacobson, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. Jeff Jacobson

    Jeff Jacobson Cinematographer

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  2. FredK

    FredK Second Unit

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    News came out about a month ago, buried in a SW thread.

    FWIW, Burtt was specifically contracted for the PT. He worked outside of ILM/SS & LF before the PT and he had no plans with them afterward.
     
  3. DonMac

    DonMac Stunt Coordinator

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    Now that the Star Wars saga is over, the timing of the move makes sense.
     
  4. PeterTHX

    PeterTHX Cinematographer

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    What's with sound designers joining Pixar?

    Gary Rydstrom joined them as well. He had previously done all of Pixar's sound design (at Skywalker Sound), "The Incredibles" was handed over to Randy Thom (who also did "War of the Worlds"). Is he next?

    By the way, Gary is responsible for many of the best soundtracks of all time..."Saving Private Ryan", "Casper", "Jurassic Park", most Pixar films, most Speilberg films of the 90's and 00's, "Jumanji", etc.
     
  5. Inspector Hammer!

    Inspector Hammer! Executive Producer

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    I think it's because animated films are a goldmine for sound designers because most, if not all, of the audio heard is done from scratch with no on-set interferances to deal with, they can go nuts and let their imaginations run wild on the sound mix.

    That's just my take, anyway.
     
  6. Paul_Stachniak

    Paul_Stachniak Screenwriter

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    He's a really amazing sound designer. I look forward to hearing his work on Pixar films - hopefully in DTS as well.
     
  7. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    I'm assuming Burtt is also doing something other than sound for pixar.

    Speaking of which, the MPSE is hosting another movie sound night in Hollywood- emphasis on FOLEY and having live foley demonstrations.
     
  8. PeterTHX

    PeterTHX Cinematographer

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    As I said, Randy Thom of Skywalker Sound has taken over the sound design of Pixar & Speilberg films. I suspect he was Rydstrom's protégé.


    Sorry, Skywalker (Rydstrom & Burtt) are firmly in the Dolby camp. They're the ones who went to Dolby to create Dolby Digital Surround EX.
     
  9. FredK

    FredK Second Unit

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    Burtt is going to Pixar to be a director (according to the news back in the SW thread - I'm not gonna try to find it [​IMG] )
     
  10. Joe_G

    Joe_G Second Unit

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    Randy Thom has been at Skywalker for a long time. He was one of the mixers on ROTJ.
     
  11. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    I think the closest thing Gary had to a "protégé" was Chris Boyes- who was his assistant for half a decade.

    I think the choice of Randy Thom for The Incredibles had more to do with the fact that Brad Bird had worked with him on 'The Iron Giant' than anything else.
     
  12. PeterTHX

    PeterTHX Cinematographer

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    Well, Randy was also the sound designer for "War of the Worlds" which would surely have been a Rydstrom project had he not left Skywalker. Coincidence? [​IMG]
     
  13. Chris Atkins

    Chris Atkins Producer

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    Yes he is. Unfortunately, I haven't cared for his mixing on most of the PT and the OT DVDs. Apparently that was toned down on ROTS because the mix was much better, IMHO.

    I'm also not sure about his editing skills, though GL was so involved that it's tough to say whether some of the editing problems with the PT were because of GL or Burtt. Though, again, the editing in ROTS was much better and Burtt was not part of the editing process in ROTS.
     
  14. Kevin Grey

    Kevin Grey Cinematographer

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    He wasn't? He's still credited as an editor.

    I too thought the editing on ROTS was much better but I tend to put the responsibility for the editing in all of the prequels on Lucas's shoulders. The DVDs make it pretty clear that what Lucas says he gets and it didn't seem that he was very receptive for others' ideas on TPM and AOTC. I think that changed in many areas on Sith which is what made it such a better movie.
     
  15. Richard Kim

    Richard Kim Producer

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    Burtt is credited as co-editor of ROTS along with Roger Barton.
     
  16. Chris Atkins

    Chris Atkins Producer

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    Sorry about that...he was a co-editor. Still, it's safe to assume he had less involvement than on TPM and AOTC.

    BTW--any editing problems that do exist in TPM and AOTC are mostly interscene cutting, not intrascene cutting. The scenes themselves flow nicely, but it's the cutting back and forth between scenes that left something to be desired, from an editing standpoint.
     
  17. Jordan_E

    Jordan_E Cinematographer

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    So does that mean with the eventual next release of Star Wars we'll actually get to hear John Williams' score?! [​IMG]
     
  18. Tim Glover

    Tim Glover Lead Actor

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    Burtt is a Genius Sound guy. The documentaries where he explains how/when/why he chose the sounds to record are really cool. That being said, Chris is right about some of the editing stuff in TPM & AOTC.

    The sound mix on the OT dvds are a truly holosonic experience but there could've been a way to have new sounds placed there, increased dynamics etc....AND make sure that the Oscar Winning Score was heard.

    Burtt will be great with Rydstrom at Pixar though. I'm sure he and Lucas will remain friends. I've always thought of them being rather close.
     

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