Hollywood, CA (March 20, 2009)--Re-recording mixer Rick Ash of Widget Post Production recently completed the final mix for first-time director Ross Katz's Taking Chance, which debuts this month on HBO.
Taking Chance is a film about a Marine Lieutenant Colonel, played by Kevin Bacon, escorting the body of a comrade, who died in the Iraq War, home to his family. Ash, who describes it as "more of a poem than a movie," prepared a richly textured mix that actively aids in telling the story and enhancing its emotional impact.
"The film is bigger than life," Ash says, "especially in the first part of the film where you have all the grandeur of Marine Corps protocol. In those moments, I played it big and really allowed the sound to take over the film and control it. Then, when we hit silent, interpersonal moments, I took the film down to nothing...in some instances, there is no sound at all."
Ash recalls a scene where Bacon's character is talking with another soldier, who is also escorting a fallen soldier home. In the course of their conversation, it is revealed that the soldier Bacon's character is accompanying is the other man's brother. "At the outset of the scene, I let it be full and extremely rich," Ash notes. "The men are surrounded by all the sounds of the tarmac--planes landing, planes taking off--but by the time you realize that it's his brother, all those sounds have disappeared and it's just his breathing."
During the course of the mix, Ash advocated for the elimination of certain musical cues in favor of a more spare sound treatment. "I felt they weren't needed, because what the actors were doing alone was so poignant," he says. "The film is so sincere and honest, and we wanted to preserve that. When we used a music cue, we really earned that music cue."
Widget Post Production