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FRANK SERAFINE UNLEASHES THE HULK IN 5.1 SURROUND SOUND

May 20, 2003 – VENICE BEACH, CALIFORNIA – Frank Serafine recently put his legendary sound design skills to work on a television commercial and 5.1-surround sound theatrical trailer for Hulk, The Video Game. Hulk, The Video Game, created by Vivendi Universal Interactive, will accompany this summer’s soon-to-be-released blockbuster motion picture, Hulk, The Movie. Serafine, in conjunction with Kovel/Fuller Advertising and Elias Associates Music, created one of the first-ever 5.1-surround sound television commercials/trailers for The Hulk.

During the course of the commercial, the Hulk destroys just about everything he can get his massive green hands on, creating a cacophony of explosions. Serafine notes, “The Hulk goes on a complete rampage in the commercial. He blows up tanks, helicopters, power stations, you name it!”

(Left-Right: Frank Serafine - Sound Designer; Shawn London - Sound Editor; Frank Gomez - Re-recording Engineer).

With so much action crammed into a 30-second spot, the project provided a new set of challenges for the veteran sound designer – and a lot of fun. Serafine comments, “It was great to be able to jam with the commercial and work so quickly. As a film sound designer you don’t often get the chance to do such short-duration projects that are as densely packed with action and sound as this Hulk project. There’s a lot of space in films, and you usually have time to develop sounds, so when you create an explosion you have three or four seconds to let it fade out. We didn’t have the luxury or time to let effects fade out with The Hulk project. This is one of the heaviest action 30-second spots I’ve ever seen or worked on.”

To synchronize the sound effects with the commercial, Serafine and sound editor, Sean London, transferred all of the action from Beta SP to QuickTime digital videos. Serafine then used an EMU EK4 Emulator keyboard loaded with explosions and crashes to drop in the appropriate effects, culled from his years of sound design experience.

Additionally, to fatten the effects, Serafine relied on the Peavey KOSMOS PRO® processor, an innovative low frequency energy and stereo image enhancement system that produces a planet rattling low-end while adding clarity and definition to any audio source. Serafine regularly relies on the KOSMOS PRO to add definition and clarity to the low-end of his surround-sound mixes.
Franks states, “The KOSMOS PRO is the best and most versatile tool for sub-harmonic frequency generation that I’ve come across in my 22-years in the sound design business. It gives me a great deal of control over my mixes and removes a lot of the EQ-ing I used to have to do.”

Remarking on the KOSMOS PRO’s unique Quake and Thud controls, Serafine states, “The KOSMOS PRO allows me to generate the sub-harmonic frequencies I need to fatten up the bass and control the ballistics of those frequencies. With just the twist of a knob, the KOSMOS PRO also makes it very easy to tighten up the bass response to get more punch.”

Serafine states, “With such a tight deadline, we probably wouldn’t have been able to do this project without digital videos. They allowed us to synch the audio very tightly with the picture internally in ProTools. Without that ability, we would have been working with video machines and the process would have taken much longer. The sound was the master in this project, which is something that doesn’t often happen in post-production. Ordinarily the picture moves and the sound follows it. To have the sound as transport and the picture follow the words was very cool.”

When it came to mixing the project, Serafine and London went to great lengths to make sure no digital artifacts lingered after using the six-track discreet mixer in ProTools. “We mixed everything with a mouse, very scientifically,” states Serafine, “and we didn’t use a ProControl because it adds artifacts to the mix that are very difficult to take out. Using a moving fader affects the final mix, so mouse mixing is the way to do it with ProTools.”

Look and listen for the Hulk to come crashing through a television set or movie theater near you.

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Frank Serafine’s impressive credits as a film score composer and sound designer include titles such as the Academy Award-nominated TRON, the Academy Award-winning THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER, STAR TREK-THE MOVIE, STAR TREK-THE SEARCH FOR SPOCK, THE ADDAMS FAMILY, VIRTUOSITY, BRAINSTORM, FIELD OF DREAMS, SHORT CIRCUIT, and LAWNMOWER MAN. For more info about Frank Serafine and the Serafine Collection, please visit: http://www.frankserafine.com