New York, NY (October 23, 2008)–Big Yellow Duck engineer Keith Hodne recently sound designed The Talk, a 30-second spot for the Greenville Humane Society and agency Erwin-Penland, both of Greenville, SC.
In the spot, a father talks seriously, presumably to his son, about the changes he’s going through physically and emotionally, and the importance of practicing safe sex. The pay off comes when the camera pans down and we see that dad is actually talking to his dog, which is actively humping his leg. The spot ends with onscreen copy: “Spay and neuter your pets. It’s the only form of birth control they understand.”
For Hodne, the biggest challenge was to replace much of the audio from the original shoot because, among other things, you could hear the dog trainer whispering, “Hump,” to the dog.
“This was a very quiet spot, so lots of room noise from the production crew and the dog trainer were picked up,” Hodne said. “I replaced that audio with a palette of subtle noises you’d hear inside a room on a sunny afternoon – birds chirping, cars and lawnmowers off in the distance. I also created the sound of the dog humping the guy’s leg. There was no music in the spot, so the sound design really stands out. Because of that it was crucial everything I did be subtle and realistic.”
“Finding the right balance between funny and offensive was the biggest challenge for everyone involved,” said Hodne. “With comedy, you never know, but I think with this spot, we found that balance, as well as delivered an important message about caring for your pets.”
The spot, which is currently airing, was directed by Dave Laden of Los Angeles-based production company Uber Content and edited by Avi Oron, Bikini Edit, New York.
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