So, today I’m here to share a couple of videos about “The Boy and The World” animation sound. For those who doesn’t know it, it’s a low budget Brazilian animated film that was nominated for Best Animated Feature Film in the 2016 Oscars, along side with many great and big animated films.
The Boy & The World is about young boy Cuca who despite his family’s poverty, lives a satisfying life, full of wonder at his rural surroundings, until his father goes on a train trip and disappears. While searching for his father, Cuca meets a wide variety of people as he journeys from a farming camp to the ocean and a large factory and then back to the big city.
I wanted to talk a bit about the film not only because it’s a Brazilian production (and, being Brazilian, I’m proud of this), but mainly because it’s a low budget film that got nominated for a big Oscar’s category. And that’s the case for many of the projects we all have been working on, right!? May be and indie game, or a small budget film or album, we’ve all been in the situation of having to get creative and do it all ourselves to make the project work.
Just for you to understand, “The Boy and The World” had an budget 360 times smaller than Disney’s “Inside Out”. Ok, that’s not a fair comparison, but both got nominated for the same Oscar’s category, what makes this comparison necessary and much more impressive.
So, first, I would like to share a short interview (made by the ProTools Experts Blog) with Marcelo Cyro, one of the four people (!!!!) responsible for the sound of the film. It doesn’t has too much info about the project itself, but it’s good to understand Marcelo’s background and his view about the production of the film’s sound design.
The only question about the film itself, I reproduce here:
PTE: What was the sound brief for this film from the director?
Marcelo: The director Alê Abreu wanted all the sound to be created, nothing was to be real, after all it was the boy’s imagination. So a horse is not a horse, a bird is not a bird, a frog is not a frog, everything is Cuca discovering a new world. For example, we used some music instruments to create sounds in the movie like Didgeridoo for the horse’s sound as well as some flutes and vocalisations for the birds.
We recorded the sounds from things like whistles, tools, and toys, and then use the computer software and plug-ins to twist, distort, and reshape to create movement or action and also to show the character ‘s personality as well as the world that he is discovering. All the ambiences was created and so we built up a library for each character, with a range of “emotions” and “moods.” For example, some crickets bothering them when the father’s boy left his home, which we made with some analog synths. Every sound was designed for a specific scene we needed in this movie, to a help a lot the story. It was very important not to use an usual sound, to find an “emotional sound”, a sound that portrayed the emotions rather than being literally correct. Showing how Cuca felt about the world, meant that sometimes sounds are larger than life, to perhaps illustrate the boy’s fear about something that he don’t know about or hadn’t experienced before. All of this makes the soundtrack an integral part of the identity of this picture, that can provide even more life to this art. Absolutely yes, tell stories with sounds especially in this movie, where you can create a unreal world, emotion and feelings. We have been able to simply change the meaning of a scene just with use of the sound or silence or create a boy’s world.
Below, i share some of the videos Marcelo did about the sound design of the film.
How create new sounds – Part 1
How To Create The Ambience In The Oscar Nominated ‘Boy And The World’ Animation
How To Create The Rain Effects In The Oscar Nominated ‘Boy And The World’ Animation
How To Create The Truck Effects In The Boy & The World
Well, hope you guys enjoyed this! If you haven’t seen the film yet, do! It’s great!
Mauricio Ruiz – www.mauricioruiz.me