Where are you currently employed?
I recently finished international mixes on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I’m now over to Southland for its 10-episode TV season.
Describe Your Job.
I work as a supervising re-recording mixer. I’m the supervising sound editor and re-recording mixer. I love working like this. I get to oversee the project from audio conception to final mix. As a supervisor, I’ll meet with the clients to discuss what they’re seeking in the soundtrack, then with my crew of editors go and create it for them, overseeing the process as we go, and editing too. I already know the soundtrack intimately, so as we go into mix, I have a really good idea what the clients are looking for.
How did you become interested in this line of work?
After four years of film school, I was working in a music-recording studio. At that time, I wanted to become a record producer. A friend of mine sent me a short 8mm film with no soundtrack, completely mute. I used the studio's 16-track reel-to-reel multi-track to start building a soundscape for it. That was it. I was hooked.
Who gave you your first break?
The great film composer Roger Bolton out at Peter Gabriel's Real World Studios in the UK. I learned to program the Fairlight Series III CMI. In a few years, it got me into the BBC and it went on from there.
What was your first union job?
It was six years ago. I’d been working and mixing in the UK for 15 years, but when I moved here to LA I had to start again. Once I had paid my non-union dues to enter the union, Bill Angorola at Warner Bros. called me up and asked if I would like to get involved in a new HBO series called In Treatment.
Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?
Last year, working on Inception. If you have a real passion for a film and have the chance to be a part of it, that's a pretty good feeling. On the international mixes, we replaced every line of dialogue with the foreign versions, but with every line we matched equalization, tone, reverb and panning to make it as close to the English version as possible.
What was your biggest challenge in your job or on a particular project and how did you overcome or solve it?
The show I’m on now, Southland. We work a remote mix situation at Warner Bros. for John Wells Productions. We built an Icon mix stage downtown at LA Center Studios, which is where I spend most of my time. We work more of a feature film workflow, creating temp mixes and sending them back and forth to picture editorial, and conforming mixes as we go. Television show schedules are fixed and not that long. The whole sound editorial/mix process needs to be extremely streamlined and organized as well as being creative. It’s a great show.
What’s the most fun you’ve had at work?
Iron Man 2. I was part of the team to create the international mixes for its theatrical release. Tracie Gallo at Warner Bros. organized the whole project and at one point we had nearly every dub stage at Warner Bros. working on the project. It was a massive undertaking to mix all the foreign versions for release. We had dubbing managers from all over the world. Security was insanely tight for obvious reasons. We weren't even allowed cell phones on the stage. The sense of camaraderie was high, and we had a great time reaching our goal.
Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?
Supervising re-recording mixer on A-list features.
What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?
I write music for television and film when I can. I’m producing an album for the rock band Silverland who I’ve been working and writing with for years. That should be released this spring.
Favorite movie(s)? Why?
I'm a big sci-fi fan... The Matrix, Blade Runner and now movies like Inception are all up there for me.
Favorite TV Program(s)? Why?
English comedy classics like Fawlty Towers and Only Fools and Horses do it for me.
Do you have an industry mentor?
I've been lucky enough to sit at the desk with the best in the world, such as John Reitz, as they work and do their magic. It can be hard to mentor and work. Re-recording mixers need to listen, to only hear what is coming from the screen for much of the time.
What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?
Go to film school then be prepared to start at the bottom to get a foot in the door.
Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?
Not so far.
Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?
This is an amazing industry; be a part of it and enjoy it.
- Compiled by Robin Rowe.
Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on the home page of the Editors Guild website, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.