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    From: STRACZYNSKI [Joe]
 Subject: Comalite...yeah, you're the first...
      To: GENIE  
    Date: 4/3/1992 8:28:00 PM  

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Comalite...yeah, you're the first person to pick up on the Grid Epsilon
reference. Maybe I'm being too obscure for my own good....

Regarding sound...we've hooked up with a terrific studio out here that's
been after us to get this show off the ground for about three years now so
that they can try some new stuff they've been cooking up. We're going to be
looking at using sound in new ways in terms of EFX, such as weapons and
equipment and other devices -- and acoustics. I tend to lean toward sound
that *feels* solid. The opening sequence in ALIENS, for instance, when the
laser starts cutting through the door, sizzling and crackling, and then the
door falls to the floor with a CLANG! that says This Is Solid, This Is Real.

Because we're in a station, or sometimes in ships, we're going to have to
adjust the acoustics to match, and probably layer in an assortment of
environmental noises, from machinery to transports to background voices to
pages, some other stuff. The sound should be as textured as our
visuals, I think, which is why we'll be shooting and producing in surround
sound, even though not all stations are equipped to broadcast same. It still
adds a better sound, even on plain stereo receivers, and increases the shelf
life of the movie/series.

Music is probably the one area in which I'm chasing my own tail the most.
It kinda bothers me that most TV SF in the last 10 years or so has utilized
quasi-classical music almost exclusively...the sort of quasi-John Williams
stuff you see on Battlestar, or TNG, or others. I'd like to see a mix of
musical motifes, and am not at *all* opposed to laying in a rock- or new-wave-
style soundtrack over the opening credits of the series...the question is
which way I want to go...a hard-driving theme like the one Copeland did for
The Equalizer, or a softer theme of the sort you have in Hill Street. My
basic problem is that I like ALL music, and trying to pick which will form
the "theme" behind the opening credits is really tough. (Correction: all
music *except* country/Western. Yuccch.)

Tomorrow, Ron (EFX Are My Life) Thornton will be coming by the house to
show me the new video renderings of the redesigned B5 station. Some others
saw them today, and apparently their jaws just dropped straight to the floor.
I'm reserving judgement until I see the thing with my own eyes.


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