Red Skies Sound Design, Back to the Future, Sunday.


After watching half of the Liverpool soccer game, I’m spending this fine Sunday in work mode. First, getting caught up on my UCLA editing class, which I fell dramatically behind last week, and then second, getting a running start on all of my legal work. With the arrival of two more films last week, and a sports movie unexpectedly taking a step forward on Friday, this is the most films I’ve worked on at once. Which is awesome, but this new reality is going to take a level of organization, energy and teamwork that is higher than I demonstrated last week, when I was still jet lagged from the trip to Pennsylvania and Washington, and was not ready for the intense pace, work load, and the meeting schedule. I got my butt kicked a little bit, frankly, crawled into Friday.

Item of note, Wednesday, unbeknownst to me, was Back to the Future Day, I ended up at a very interesting somewhat-kooky and fun party dedicated to what is an amazingly and culturally significant movie, bonus – the production designer from all three Back to the Future movies, and McFly were hanging out. Which is cool beans.


Red Skies at Night continues to roll. The editing team is working on what we have identified as the 3-4 weakest areas of the film, our target is to have the first “good” draft by Halloween. On Saturday, I made a trip to Glendale, my old Dreamworks Animation neighborhood, and interviewed another sound designer/editor.

Sound design and music are not just important to Red Skies at Night. They are Red Skies at Night. In fact, there are a key story elements will make no sense until the sound design is correct. They include: (i) the alien device, which communicates with Flower, and plays a recording of the US Navy shooting down Flower’s spaceship when Dylan gets fried in the microwave; (ii) Flower’s telepathy; (iii) Ave Maria telepathy; (iv) the outer space vision (VFX too); and (v) Flower hearing Dylan’s hearing (VFX too)


When I explained the vision and soundscape we need to create, and the fact that the alien decide, a crystal computer, is to be brought to life via sound design, like they did with R2D2 in Star Wars, the sound designer’s eyes got big.

Two colleagues who were with me at the presentation looked like “lightbulbs” went off over their head when they listened to me explain the plan to the sound designer about the visual effects and sound design. We don’t have a movie without these elements, in fact. Red Skies without music and sound design is a performance art piece.

And my big take away from that a-ha moment, is that I need to do a better job explaining to the rest of the production team where these sound design and visual FX pieces are going to go, and what how they affect the story. I watch the movie, and all the missing pieces are filled in, because I know where they are all going to go.

Anyway – the mission to lock picture on Red Skies by December 1 continues. I’m continuing to interview and put the final pieces in place for the post-production team of Red Skies at Night. We’ll see what happens.

Thanks for reading my blog. Enjoy the rest of your Sunday –



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