From footsteps to bone cracks, Foley artists bring films to life with their imaginative sound effects, but as digital technology goes full speed ahead in 21st century moviemaking, can Hollywood’s low tech Foley artist survive in this high-tech age?
What We Thought:
Actors of Sound is a fascinating look at the hidden stars of filmmaking, Foley artists. If you aren’t familiar with the term, Foley is the post-production addition of sounds like footsteps, car doors, and everything in between. It’s not dialogue or music, but it’s every other sound you hear in a film. It’s been largely hand done for decades until now.
The film goes over the history of Foley and some of the well-known artists. They give away some trade secrets, how they make horse steps, footsteps, people marching and talk about how the digital age is changing their job.
Nowadays filmmakers and studios want to use digital technology for everything because it’s usually cheaper and faster. There is a library of sounds and computers can try to digitally come up with a sound which is eliminating the need for Foley work.
But as the artists say, a computer can’t feel and only mimics a sound. It can’t feel an emotion in a scene that would require a different tone. Foley artists still believe you need the human element to make the sound work correctly. I pretty much support that and loved seeing what they did to create sounds.
That’s the best part of the movie, seeing them working. Whether it’s marching in place to make footsteps or going through swap meets and trash to find props for sounds, I found it highly fascinating. They even showed Foley artists from around the world and how they go about it.
Actors of Sound is a very interesting documentary on a side of filmmaking that usually gets ignored. If you like filmmaking documentaries or are interested in filmmaking, it’s definitely