You will be scheduled for a consultation with the Producer who will assess requirements and preferences such as style, positioning (music as focus, source, incidental etc), the use of real or sampled instruments and so on. The Producer will offer suggestions and plan major hit-points. The Producer will also collect a draft of the film, either a script or preferably a video copy.
The Producer will liase with the other sound staff (Composer, Performers, Engineers) and return an estimate of the total cost.
Once the project is agreed to, the Composer and Performers work with the Producer to create a sketch-track, to give an idea of the finished product. The Producer submits this sketch-track to you for assessment, and receives feedback. Total re-writes are common at this stage.
The Producer continues to work with the Composer until a suitable sketch-track is created. It’s important to ensure you are satisfied before moving on, as this step is the last chance to request full re-writes without incurring additional costs.
From the chosen sketch-track, the Composer arranges the score for Performers to read for the recording. The Producer does the recording itself and programs extra parts from samples. For basic projects and more modern musical styles, performers need not be employed, as the Producer will often create a whole soundtrack entirely with sampled instruments. Read ‘Real Versus Sampled’.
You are presented with the draft soundtrack and asked to make suggestions to the Producer, who informs the necessary sound staff or simply makes the alterations.
Once complete, the draft soundtrack goes into Post-Production. The result is balanced and mixed for maximum loudness and accurate stereo imaging on any media; digital or analogue.
The final soundtrack is frame-accurate synchronised to the video, along with the speech tracks and any other audio (such as sound effects). This is the last opportunity to request alterations.
The final mix is rendered and submitted to you. Alterations beyond this step are charged per hour.