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Dolphin Tale 2 ADR, Three Years Later

Dolphin Tale 2 ADR, Three Years Later

In June 2011, our post production audio mixing studio (Audio A) was recently completed, along with the renovations to our recording stage. We talked about easing our way in to sessions by doing some things that didn’t have clients present so we could work out the kinks. It sounded like a reasonable plan, that was until we received a phone call from the producers of the upcoming feature film, Dolphin Tale. Their request: ADR with 8 actors with the ADR supervisor and Director in studio to supervise.

Internally we quickly met to determine if we should take the session and jump in the deep end immediately, or if we should turn down the session in fear that we really weren’t ready. Like most people would do, we dove in the deep end and gave it a shot. The session went off without a major hitch, there were a few stressful moments but all in all, we thought things went well. Three months later, the film came out, was hugely successful, and there we were in the end credits. When a film is completed there are a lot of stories and every one of them is meaningful to the people and ours was special to us. Building our studio was 18 painful months in the making, and to see our name in the credits of a feature film for the first real session in the new room was very satisfying.

Fast forward three years and a lot of sessions in the mixing studio later, and we received a call from the same producers looking for time to do ADR for the upcoming film, Dolphin Tale 2. This time the sessions were a little bigger, more actors over a 2-day period, again with the same ADR supervisor and Director back with us. Since 2011 we have done so many ADR sessions for TV shows, feature films, and independent films, ADR sessions in the new room are second nature to us so there was definitely not the same level of stress this year.

There was, however, a great sense of pride. Three years ago, we had just finished a stressful 18 months of construction. There were times when we wondered if Audio A would ever get finished. Now three years later, to have our first client back with us showed us that first session definitely was successful, but it was also a reminder of the hard work and the tough decisions that went in to building Audio A. There’s nothing like the positive reinforcement from a client in repeat business. We never really knew, from the client perspective, how that first session went, but with same producers back three years later, I guess we know now.

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As COO of IDEAS, John manages the day-to-day operations of the company. He is a category expert in studio production and is responsible for bringing advanced digital media technology to IDEAS.