Sound is all around us. It fulfills our life with nuances; it gives us clues of where we are and what surrounds us. Mostly we are passive listeners, who perceive sound as a supplement to the image. Just close your eyes and audio becomes a main source of the information.
Noises in cinematography evolved through time: started from silence on the screen, now films are full of noises that sound natural. Thanks to the modern equipment noises match actions and do not cause dissonance (as it happened decades ago).
Earlier, actors should have had pleasant voices; an exceptional timbre could help its owner to become famous. Today special mics are used to make the voice interesting and adjusts it to the scene. This eliminates the necessity for actors to work on the vocal range extension. I mean, if actors have recognizable voice it still works on them, if not – that is not a problem anymore. The striking change is that today not only the actor generates a mood by intonations, pauses and emphasis, but technologies help to make it perfect. We are free to use a variety of recording tools to achieve the desired outcome. Fortunately, sometimes modern equipment gives a chance to recover and improve even spoiled recordings.
However, there is something that entirely depends on actors’ talent – and that is the ability to adopt an accent. Actors spend months learning to speak with the accent typical for their characters. For instance, Margot Robbie who has recently acted Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad practiced talking with strong Brooklyn accent. To pay tribute, Margot’s fans told she succeeded in it. Well, as a non-English speaker I have to believe them.
Accent is something that makes spectators believe actors. Accent is like a signature of a nation or a particular place – when we hear people talking with a specific accent even having no more clues we can imagine their background. We can guess French people listening to their “R”, or German by strict “barking” sounds. I know if Russian comes from other regions of Russia – in central part it is normal to pronounce everything with an “A”, whereas in the southern area people will say the same words trough the sound “O”. No wonder that in film industry accent becomes more and more valuable. It defines people as part of the place they were raised in and makes them feel special.
Inspired by Alten, S. Audio in Media