Sonic Cinema

Sounds, Visions and Insights by Brian Skutle

“How on Earth is music going to figure into this series?”

Ahhh, but that’s the $64 question I’d been asking myself as I headed into “Baron Wasteland.” Intended to be a documentary-esque series, with so much dialogue & speaking about the projects, would I be able to work in music into the narrative of these respective projects, or would an opening title piece & end credits piece be all I wrote for this series?

Here’s another quote for you:
“Your film is like your children. You might want a child with certain qualities, but you are never going to get the exact specification right. The film has a privilege to live its’ own life and develop its’ own character. To surpress this is dangerous. It is an approach that works the other way too: sometimes the footage has amazing qualities that you did not expect.” -Werner Herzog

More than once, the German master behind “Grizzly Man” and “Aguirre, the Wrath of God”- whose influence is all over the 3rd and 4th chapters of “Baron Wasteland”- has proven correct while editing and scoring “Chapter 2: Lemur See, Lemur Due.” The editing came together pretty simply, and a call into a friend for some pictures from a while back has provided unexpected riches. As I looked at the film, looking and thinking about musical opportunities, ideas began to present themselves.

Having already written the music for the film’s subject work- discussed in my last PD entry- helped chart my course. While a simple chamber ensemble of strings & trombone would work well enough for the longer cues (in-film montages visually looking at the phenomenon of the nickname), as well as the credits pieces that’ll bookend each chapter of the series, the percussive effects that played so heavily in “Requiem for a Ringtail’s” score also had a part to play.

That’s where Herzog’s words ring truest in this story. In both “Baron Wasteland” and “Unwinnable Hand,” one of my goals has been to not only tell compelling personal stories but also to push the boundaries of how music can enhance my onscreen storytelling. A couple of places had obvious opportunities to use the percussion. Other places, well, I’ll let you hear for yourself when the film is put online.

I know I know, I’m such a tease. But like Herzog, there’s a method to my madness, and more than a little madness to my method. True, I’m not one of the greatest filmmakers. Herzog is, and his philosophy is universally applicable to any subject. That’s why I no longer look at opportunities lost in my creative life, but revel in the opportunities I’ve had, and how they’ve shaped me as an artist, and as an individual. I’m better as both because of both.

Ok, I will give you a look at some of the behind-the-scene events that took place while filming “Chapter 2.” I hope you enjoy!

“Baron Wasteland: Chapter 2” Behind-the-Scenes

Cinema Nouveau Productions | MySpace Video

Thanks for listening,

Brian Skutle

Click here to read my third “Baron Wasteland” Production Diary.
Click here to read my second “Baron Wasteland” Production Diary.
Click here to read my first “Baron Wasteland” Production Diary.

Click here to read my latest entry in my “Unwinnable Hand” Production Diary.

Click here to read “Red Cup Mafia,” another short script I wrote in November 2006- inspired by some recent happenings at work- that I hope to film in the future through Cinema Nouveau Productions.

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