Sound Design in Film

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    Creation of the Kinetoscope

    The Kinetoscope is a device that allowed films to be viewed by one person at a time through a peephole window. This machine was created by Thomas Edison and William Kennedy Laurie Dickson.
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    The Dickson Experimental Sound Film

    The Dickson Experimental Sound Film was the first film with live recorded sound. It was made for the Kinetoscope, and can be viewed here.
  • Creation of Vitaphone

    Creation of Vitaphone
    Vitaphone was a sound film system used for feature films made by Warner Bros. and First National, from 1926 to 1931. It was the only commercially successful sound-on-disc system used for film.
  • Don Juan

    Don Juan
    Don Juan was the first feature-length film to use the Vitaphone sound system. Although the film includes a synchronized musical score and sound effects, there is no spoken dialogue.
  • The Jazz Singer

    The Jazz Singer
    The Jazz Singer was the first feature-length sound film with lip-synchronous singing and speech. This film effectively marked the end of the silent film era.
  • Show Boat

    Show Boat
    Show Boat was the first major instance of foley. Named after Jack Foley, foley is the art of recreating everyday sounds in a film that could not properly be picked up in the recording process, later added to the scene in order to improve audio quality. This includes any sound from footsteps to a hero getting punched in an action movie fight sequence.
  • Peludópolis

    Peludópolis was the first animated film to feature sound. This film used the Vitaphone sound-on-disc system to record the sound.
  • Motion Picture Sound Editors (M.P.S.E.)

    Motion Picture Sound Editors (M.P.S.E.)
    Motion Picture Sound Editors (M.P.S.E.) is founded. M.P.S.E. strives to increase the recognition, as well as demonstrate the importance and artistic value, of sound in film.
  • Revolutionary Sound Design

    Revolutionary Sound Design
    Ben Burtt revolutionized sound design in science fiction with Star Wars. Iconic sounds he created include the lightsaber hum, the blaster shots, Darth Vader’s breathing, and many more.
  • First "Sound Designer" Film Credit

    First "Sound Designer" Film Credit
    The first use of the term “Sound Designer” as a credit in film. Walter Murch was listed as a Sound Designer in the credits for Apocalypse Now. The usual credit given in film before that was Supervising Sound Editor or Sound Editor.