“Ghostbusters: Afterlife” contains audio Easter eggs from the original

The 1984 “Ghostbusters” Proton Pack is back in “Ghostbusters: Afterlife”. Used in the original film by the team of paranormal sleuths played by Harold Ramis, Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray and Ernie Hudson, the pack’s pistol projects a bright jet of light that resembles a sizzling electric current followed by an explosion.

This is just one of the few sonorous Easter eggs in the movie.

Director Jason Reitman needed help with the trailer for the new film, which debuted on November 19, and reached out to re-recording mixer Will Files. “The idea was for this girl to find a proton pack in this abandoned barn,” Files explains. “She doesn’t know what it is, and she starts it. You hear him offscreen, and he dies. [But] at the very end [of the trailer] it comes to life. His first instinct was to dig into Sony’s sound archives to see what material existed from the first film. Turns out Columbia Pictures did a pretty good job of archiving, and Files discovered a treasure trove of sounds. There were also digitized working tapes from the original sound designer – as well as shots that were never used in the first film.

These releases seemed to be part of the “Ghostbusters” world, so Files used some in the teaser. Phoebe (Mckenna Grace) lighting the pack for the first time was one of the very first sequences Files created. But since the pack was supposed to be 30 years old, it took the original sounds and added new notes that made it rusty and poorly calibrated. “It hasn’t been lit for so long,” he explains, “it needs this overhaul and the oil to be redistributed.”

For the spinning of the pack at start-up, Files recorded an old railroad welding turbine from the 1800s. “We did a lot of experiments taking those original sounds and made new sounds out of them. We took the sound of the wand and the proton flow and processed it and made it sound like it was going around in circles. That’s what you hear when you’re up close at the back of the bag and see the light, ”Files explains.

Another sonorous Easter egg, Files reveals, takes place when Phoebe slides along a fire hydrant in the basement. “We picked up the sound when Dan Aykroyd slides down the post at the start of ‘Ghostbusters’,” he says. “We just stole it from the original and put it in Phoebe’s [scene]. “

Bringing back the Terror Hounds, also featured in the original, presented a greater challenge. When it came across the soundtrack, Files says, the quality was low fidelity. So he used the original effects as a basis. “We found sounds and tried to guess what the sources were,” he explains. “We guessed that they were lions and tigers and started playing with them, increasing them, and we also put our own voices, tilted to blend in with the sounds of the animals.”

Files says one of the first sounds heard when the characters are introduced in “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” is a terror dog crunching on dog food, but when Reitman heard the sound it didn’t sound enough to him. violent. “What you hear,” Files reveals, “is actually the sound of a lion eating an animal.”

Alicia R. Rucker