Sound Community Steps Up Effort to Urge End Credit Revisions

Hollywood Sign
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The Cinema Audio Society, Motion Picture Sound Editors and Association of Motion Picture Sound have stepped up their combined Sound Credit Initiative, launching a website urging members of the sound community, filmmakers, studio representatives and others to sign up in support of this effort.

Last August, the three organizations teamed up to release an open letter urging Hollywood to allow key members of the sound department the same representation in end credits as it does department heads such as the director of photography and film editor. Specifically, the letter suggested that the production sound mixer, supervising sound editors and rerecording mixers share a single card "and be appropriately positioned within the same proximity of the other key roles, such as director of photography, film editor, production designer, costume designer, unit production manager and 1st assistant director."

"We're building a community," CAS president Karol Urban says of the new initiative, explaining that the group hopes to empower individuals to ask for the credit, while urging filmmakers and studios to help make this happen. "From production through postproduction, sound professionals contribute to creative storytelling and the elevation of the audience's experience. This initiative allows filmmakers and studios to recognize their sound department's importance in a film's overall success."

Supervising sound editors, production sound mixers and rerecording mixers are eligible for Oscars, BAFTAs, Emmys and other major awards. (At the Oscars, these roles were previously recognized in the sound editing and mixing categories;  beginning in 2021 they will be honored in a single category). “Sound teams create 50 percent of a movie and win awards for their creative contribution, but they are positioned far down the list of credits. This initiative is a move towards representative credits," says AMPS chair Rob Walker.

“Sound is visceral," adds MPSE president Mark Lanza. "It tells the audience where we are, focuses the audience on what we want them to feel and leads them through an elaborate illusion. The people creating these works are amazing artists and should be addressed as such.”