WORDS IN MY MOUTH/”High Noon at JFK: Kim v. Ross”
I finished my part on the film I’ve been talking about, “Second Hand,” (as it now seems to be called) a few days ago when I re-recorded my lines in the studio in upper Manhattan. This was necessary because the dialog from the location shoot was buried so deep in ambient noise the editor couldn’t get it clean enough to put ambient noise back into it. Got that? You do? Would you explain it to me? Anyway, it seems the wind in our footage made everything else almost unintelligible, so we did it again, in the studio.
Me on location under the Geo. Washington Bridge
Anyway, I thought I did my job really well, and they seemed to think so, too. The task was to sync up the words I was saying…aah, how many different ways can I say it? You do the math. Frankly, they’d been doing it the wrong way: they were trying to get relatively inexperienced actors to watch the film and lip-sync with themselves on the fly. Very difficult to do even for pros.
The way you do it is to look a few times at a short clip–from 3 to 10 seconds long– LISTENING to the lines you see yourself saying, then FORGET the visuals and record the lines as you remember they sounded. It’s not hard. And if you don’t sync up every single word it’s no real problem, because the editor can advance or retard the film to fit around the gaps you didn’t quite duplicate.
I think Jay and Blue Arees, auteur and editor, respectively, were blown away by how quickly the job went when they did it the time-tested way.
No biggie, but I was pleased they were happy with the page out of my half-century-backed book o’ performing tricks and treats. I think this film is for Jay’s Master’s in filmmaking, and I hope he’s successful. I’ve enjoyed getting my feet wet with a whole new generation of filmmakers, and I hope they’ve liked working with me enough to consider me a future resource on either side of the camera.
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This is a piece I wrote almost 25 yrs ago when the brothers Kim–Ming Gook and Dai Young; last names come first in Korea–deplaned to start their long sentences as our sons.
The picture here is of the four of us, Marion & myself, Max & Ben going into our first winter together.