My friend invited me to visit a sound studio in Andheri neighborhood
while she recorded dialogue for another upcoming Hindi movie that she is in. Over the course
of four hours, I observed a few things.
A majority of all Hindi films have complete audio dubs. The video and the
audio are recorded at two separate times. After the movie finishes filming, each
actor must come to a sound studio to re-record their dialogue. This appears to
be a tiring process. The dialogue is usually fast, and the actor must exactly
match tone and pitch while keeping synch with her own lips.
- The building section we were in was partitioned into two areas: Recording
Room, and Control Room. The Recording Room had a podium, a
microphone, a video projector, speakers, a large screen wall, and a couch to
rest on. The Control Room was about 20' x 20', was soundproof, and had two
couches and three chairs.
- There were seven people, including myself, in the Control Room.
These people were: Executive Producer, Lead Audio Editor, Audio Technician,
Assistant Director 1, Assistant Director 2, Chubby Guy, and Foreigner (Me).
- It was freezing cold in the room. The audio technician even put on a white
cotton snow cap.
- They were using some sort of computer-based digital audio editing software
to record the dialogue. The Audio Technician was able to interact with the
software with much fluency. There was a special keyboard with a wheel that
allowed the staff to roll forward or backwards along the movie timeline.
- We ordered hot tea and sandwiches from the studio canteen. I had two cups
of chai and an egg sandwich.
Assistant Director and Me, Outside the Control Room
Some Bollywood Sound Studio slang words that I heard:
- Pilot = Original audio that was taped with the video. Ex: "Play
that back with the pilot." or "I want to hear the pilot."
- Taking = Rolling, recording. Ex: Taking! (Like
- Mind Blowing = Amazing. Great. Usually used in a sarcastic
way. Ex: The power goes out- "Mind blowing, man!"