I've always been under the understanding that Loop Group is SAG/AFTRA jurisdiction, and since these actors make royalties, that any recorded group ADR cannot be custom-library-mastered (no licensing, just in-house use) for future usage in effects editorial. Is this actually the hard and fast rule, or is there more to this that I may not be familiar with? Because I have heard pre-recorded group ADR in custom libraries before but I've always thought that you're not supposed to.

Ultimately, how is the line drawn on this issue of "mastering up" group ADR for future personal usage? I personally haven't chosen to do so because of what I currently understand about the politics and legalities. I'd love to hear some thoughts on this though, especially from the veterans who have spent a lot of time working group ADR (since it probably won't apply to smaller films). Thanks!

1 Answer 1


I think your decision not to master these recordings is a good one.

It's definitely a violation of Union rules to put group ADR in your personal library. Those actors rely on sessions to make a living (sometimes a very good living, but they gotta eat). Good group ADR actors can bring alot to making a project come alive, so it's best to keep them in business.

I worked on a network TV show where we recorded new group ADR every week for each episode. And the actors got paid for each session, even though it would've been possible to recycle some of the recordings from prior shows.

The only group/walla recordings that go in my personal library are field recordings in which I've edited out specific, individually recognizable voices. Usually recorded in an area with a wash of voices, very far away from any specific conversations. The place where I currently work won't even allow these type of field/stealth walla recordings to go into the central sfx library; just to make sure that every voice in the film is covered under a union contract.

  • Thanks Justin! I was having a strong feeling this was the case, thanks for clarifying it! :) I do hear it's one of the best gigs in town. Aug 24, 2011 at 22:12
  • Your welcome. Yes, it is a good gig. That being said, like most of us, I've worked on small/no budget/labor of love films where the ADR loop group was a bunch of my friends/film crew and they got paid in beer.
    – Justin P
    Aug 24, 2011 at 22:24

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.