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Hi guys,

I have recently been shooting in the south of England for a period drama independent film. The on-location sound is quiet enough for the indoor scenes and dialogue is nice and clear without traffic and planes.

But outside is a complete nightmare for this-even the hint of traffic spoils the illusion.

My question is- what do location recordists usually do on period dramas? I imagine the roads are closed on big productions, or is everything simply ADR, atmos and foley?

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One of the best sounding period dramas in recent years IMHO was the King's Speech. Here's a great video interview with the production mixer. He specifically addresses the issues of recording period dramas outside.

Usually period pieces have a pretty decent budget to pull off the production design, sets, costumes, car rentals etc.. Some shoot exteriors on a backlot, shoot in the countryside, or close off streets. Even then, I there's a ton of ADR to be done.

The omnipresent sound of traffic rumble is the biggest issue. Other than ADR or shooting in the middle of nowhere, the best way to deal with this type of noise is a Cedar DNS system. We have one where I work and it does wonders if used judiciously.

Best of luck, getting quiet, clean production sound is truly an underrated art.

  • A poor man's solution to Cedar DNS is the ReaFIR plugin in Reaper. It's not as good, I'm sure, but it's free and fairly easy. Cheap, easy to use, effective; choose two. – Dave Matney Sep 1 '11 at 19:38
  • cheers, both these look like great plug-ins. Amazing how difficult it is to get away from traffic! – Blue Owl Studios UK Sep 1 '11 at 20:39

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