Q4 2018

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105 Q4 2018 / CINEMONTAGE 105 Q4 2018 / CINEMONTAGE W hy anyone would want to be a sound mixer is beyond me. You sit all day in a dark room with no windows. There's a mixing board with endless dials, levers, buttons. You spend all day, hour after hour, dialing up music and dialing down music, dialing up sound effects, doors closing, guns shooting, birds chirping... Too much rain noise, not enough radio in the background, voices too low, too loud, crowds babbling... This goes on for weeks. With the film, the mixer doesn't get out in the sun and fresh air — the next movie comes right in while the mixer stays sitting in the dark, in a closed room getting ready to dial in faucets dripping and footsteps. Yes, there's nobody better at it than Lee Dichter, but did he want to do it as a boy? When the other kids were playing baseball and going to the beach, was he home, keeping his room dark, screwing around with creating clocks ticking and bells ringing? You have to be a very neurotic kid to want to grow up to be a mixer. I don't know why anyone wants the job, but I'm glad Lee has grown up neurotic enough to do it because he's been a big plus to my movies over the years, and I hope he remains neurotic enough to continue. Woody Allen Colleague; Film Director n L ee Dichter is my friend, my mentor, my fellow nerd. What can I say here that isn't known and spoken out loud by all of us. As I reflect on my start in this business and remember Lee showing the way, I think about his generosity in sharing his knowledge and experience. I don't focus on his accomplishments and very long list of credits and accolades, but rather on his ability to be a magician at the board while making it seem like no big thing, like it was so natural. It is of great credit to Lee and great benefit to me that he was able to share so much of his work ethic, his client relationship skills and his great taste with so many of us. Lee's dedication to a film project was boundless to a fault. Even while being treated for cancer, Lee was in the mix room with us. Taking short breaks on the couch but always listening carefully, he persevered as he always did. My first memory of being in a mix room is with Lee. I'd recently been hired by Sound One and they had just installed new console automation in his room. I had some familiarity with it so was tasked with assisting Lee as he started mixing with Alan Pakula. It didn't take him long to learn the automation but he insisted I stay through the final mix anyway. Sitting with him at the board! This was a kickstart to my film education and the catalyst for my career goal. I wanted to become a mixer like Lee. I cannot thank you enough, my friend. Michael Barry, CAS Friend/Colleague/Mentee; Re-Recording Mixer n L ee Dichter has touched so many lives through his illustrious career. In 2000, I was fortunate enough to become part of the executive team at Sound One. At the time, it was the foundation of the New York post sound industry and Lee was the foundation of Sound One. We had become part of a larger company and the industry was in flux, so we were able to adapt to the changes along with everyone. Lee was able to keep things comfortable for his many clients, so they felt like they had a home where they could create and laugh at the same time. Lee has taken the time to mentor others along the way and pass on his years of experience in teasing out dialogue when there didn't seem to be a way, to make scores blossom with clarity and taste, and to interweave sound effects to create incredible dimension in his films. He not only was mixing for many of the top directors of the time, but was also working with many sound editors who were able to sit with him while he meticulously applied his skill to the tracks. I had the honor of collaborating with Lee on Mission to Mars and The Producers at the 54th Street mix stage. Each film had a room full of creative individuals, and all of us were having a great time putting these projects together. I congratulate Lee for this evening's recognition of all that he has done for motion pictures and motion picture sound. Lon Bender, MPSE Colleague; Sound Editor, Re-Recording Mixer n B ack in the old days, Sound One was the center of post- production in New York and my good friend Lee Dichter was the center of Sound One. He was the lead re-recording mixer and the heart of the company. The very long list of his mixing credits reads like a catalog of New York's motion picture history of the last 40 years. Lee was a mentor to all the young sound editors and assistants, myself included. He showed me the better ways of covering a scene and laying out the tracks, and he taught me how to blend sounds to come up with more interesting effects. Of course, a lot of this happened on the mix stage while we were working. I learned from his quiet way of pointing out my mistakes, and did better the next time. When the Guild organized a contract for Sound One, Lee took the lead representing the technicians and engineers. He never shied away from confronting management. He stood up for all the people working under him and helped get the best Lee's Legion of Fans Some Words from His Admirers … compiled by Edward Landler

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