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Netflix teaser "Dark" first German production


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  • 4 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

way over 300 shooting days and 3 seasons of "Dark" are done and the "cycle" is complete.

 

It was shot in and around Berlin. Even what looks like countryside or small town / suburbs - all within 1-2 hours drive from Berlin.

 

A lot was shot in the studios in Potsdam-Babelsberg which of course gave us a lot of controlled situations. But if you think a studio is dead silent - wrong. Totally wrong.

To create daylight from the outside of the set in a normally dark studio that still would give enough power to light the interials needed loads of HMIs and / or sky-panels. Heavy fan noise!!

That´s where the Cedar came in to play and would give me (and the Director / producers) a sense of what can be done and solved in post. I don´t really use the Cedar for exterial noise like street noise, wind etc. but static fan noise is what I really love the Cedar working on.

 

My gear for the show was pretty straight forward:

 

Cmit or MK41 on the boom for interials

MKH 60 (8060 in season 3) for exterials

 

dedicated rain-setups with MKH60 for all the heavy rain scenes.

 

I had to learn the hard way: if you got heavy (sic!) SFX-rain you need a bullet proof setup.

We had a scene where the mic would fail mid take because over time some leakage went down the jumper-cable from the basket to the plug-on into the XLR-connector. It was all sealed with cling-film and tape but still came through.

 

Now the jumper cable ends inside a waterproof box. There are no connectors in the open.

 

Another problem (to be solved) was the rainman / Cinela Kelly. Problem again: heavy SFX rain which fills the rainman within 30 seconds. After that the water will run what looks like a thick stream from the front of the rainman. When booming from above the actors that stream is visible and looks very different than the rest of the rain. Even with 2 rainman altering between takes it did not work. In the end we went for booming from below (using the rainman the wrong way around).

 

Rain again: when micing the actors for a rain scene we tried all the common tricks to avoid the lav getting hit directly by the water. When shooting the follow up in the studio the actors had get wet again which was done by our helpful wardrobe department. You gotta watch this procedure because them spraying water doesn't come from the top like the rain - it will spray from bottles from any given direction. One direct hit - and we would need to rewire. Even with the B6. They still work afterwards but if a single drop is directly in front of the capsule it sounds like under water.

 

On the cart I´m using a Cooper 208D into a Zaxcom Fusion 12.

Wireless is all Zaxcom. Using the Fusion knobs to adjust the TRX gain via Zaxnet is a blessing.

 

Comms for the Boom, another for video and live-IFB and a third for video-playback. Director and folks behind a screen using EK1039 receivers so they could switch between those two with a single button.

 

Another comm input section gives me the option to receive PL from the Boom (if they wire themself) and to listen to 1 or two walkie channels. This comes in handy when we had actors in a decomination suit and they needed to hear themself, each other and the Director on the walkie.

 

Quite amazing what this oldschool mixer from Cooper is still capable of.

For run and gun situations I´ve got my bag setup.

 

Zaxcom Nomad 12 with 3 QRX200 + old 1 RX900. A Mix8 would attache to the Nomad if I had to be mobile but still had 5-6 actors + Boom´s.

 

Speaking of the Boom´s: unfortunately our main crew was only 2 persons. My Boom Ops Ben Dunker (1st season) and Hunor Schauschitz (S2&3) did a fantastic job. It´s not only the booming - but you have to survive as a couple of the two of us for this long period of time.

Only on some days did we have a second boom operator. This was unfortunate but since we managed to achieve a good production sound with only 1 Boom Op in season 1 we couldn´t convince production to make for an even better sound by using a 2nd Boom permanently.

 

The shooting style with 2 cameras all the time wasn´t to difficult. Most of the time our beloved DOP Nik Summerer would give us almost matching headroom. The blocking wasn´t really action-style. But the more static your actors are the cleaner you want the sound. If they run all over the place you accept a certain level of clothing noise. If the walk really slowly or just sit on a table - you don´t wanna hear a single rustle. Sometimes this was a challange.

 

"Dark" got most of it´s audience in foreign countries but still a lot of this audience prefered the original German spoken sound mix. That´s not to often I think - specially in the US.

 

Hope you got an idea of how we worked. Any more questions - ask!

 

 

Matthias

 

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Hi Matthias,
Congrats for three seasons "Dark" and thanks for the detailed writeup, especially your experience with heavy SFX rain. I'd imagine the sound of the boom from below with the rainman turned around plus heavy rain is rather compromised? How does the Cinela Kelly work compared to the Rainman? Does it have that "stream" as well?


 

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the Kelly had the same stream coming out. And the waterproofed material didn’t hold too well. It sounded very good. Nice and transparent but could not cope with the heavy SFX rain. After 45 Minutes max of being in the rain I‘ve noticed the first drops coming through.

Booming from underneath didn’t sound as bad as we thought but obviously wasn’t first choice either. 

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  • 3 months later...
On 2/17/2020 at 6:38 AM, Matthias Richter said:

"Dark" got most of it´s audience in foreign countries but still a lot of this audience prefered the original German spoken sound mix. That´s not to often I think - specially in the US.

 

 

I watched Dark in its native German with English subtitle.

I also watched Money Heist in native Spanish with English subtitles.

 

Both very well done!! Excellent, I meant!!

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 3 weeks later...
On 2/17/2020 at 9:38 AM, Matthias Richter said:

way over 300 shooting days and 3 seasons of "Dark" are done and the "cycle" is complete.

 

It was shot in and around Berlin. Even what looks like countryside or small town / suburbs - all within 1-2 hours drive from Berlin.

 

A lot was shot in the studios in Potsdam-Babelsberg which of course gave us a lot of controlled situations. But if you think a studio is dead silent - wrong. Totally wrong.

To create daylight from the outside of the set in a normally dark studio that still would give enough power to light the interials needed loads of HMIs and / or sky-panels. Heavy fan noise!!

That´s where the Cedar came in to play and would give me (and the Director / producers) a sense of what can be done and solved in post. I don´t really use the Cedar for exterial noise like street noise, wind etc. but static fan noise is what I really love the Cedar working on.

 

My gear for the show was pretty straight forward:

 

Cmit or MK41 on the boom for interials

MKH 60 (8060 in season 3) for exterials

 

dedicated rain-setups with MKH60 for all the heavy rain scenes.

 

I had to learn the hard way: if you got heavy (sic!) SFX-rain you need a bullet proof setup.

We had a scene where the mic would fail mid take because over time some leakage went down the jumper-cable from the basket to the plug-on into the XLR-connector. It was all sealed with cling-film and tape but still came through.

 

Now the jumper cable ends inside a waterproof box. There are no connectors in the open.

 

Another problem (to be solved) was the rainman / Cinela Kelly. Problem again: heavy SFX rain which fills the rainman within 30 seconds. After that the water will run what looks like a thick stream from the front of the rainman. When booming from above the actors that stream is visible and looks very different than the rest of the rain. Even with 2 rainman altering between takes it did not work. In the end we went for booming from below (using the rainman the wrong way around).

 

Rain again: when micing the actors for a rain scene we tried all the common tricks to avoid the lav getting hit directly by the water. When shooting the follow up in the studio the actors had get wet again which was done by our helpful wardrobe department. You gotta watch this procedure because them spraying water doesn't come from the top like the rain - it will spray from bottles from any given direction. One direct hit - and we would need to rewire. Even with the B6. They still work afterwards but if a single drop is directly in front of the capsule it sounds like under water.

 

On the cart I´m using a Cooper 208D into a Zaxcom Fusion 12.

Wireless is all Zaxcom. Using the Fusion knobs to adjust the TRX gain via Zaxnet is a blessing.

 

Comms for the Boom, another for video and live-IFB and a third for video-playback. Director and folks behind a screen using EK1039 receivers so they could switch between those two with a single button.

 

Another comm input section gives me the option to receive PL from the Boom (if they wire themself) and to listen to 1 or two walkie channels. This comes in handy when we had actors in a decomination suit and they needed to hear themself, each other and the Director on the walkie.

 

Quite amazing what this oldschool mixer from Cooper is still capable of.

For run and gun situations I´ve got my bag setup.

 

Zaxcom Nomad 12 with 3 QRX200 + old 1 RX900. A Mix8 would attache to the Nomad if I had to be mobile but still had 5-6 actors + Boom´s.

 

Speaking of the Boom´s: unfortunately our main crew was only 2 persons. My Boom Ops Ben Dunker (1st season) and Hunor Schauschitz (S2&3) did a fantastic job. It´s not only the booming - but you have to survive as a couple of the two of us for this long period of time.

Only on some days did we have a second boom operator. This was unfortunate but since we managed to achieve a good production sound with only 1 Boom Op in season 1 we couldn´t convince production to make for an even better sound by using a 2nd Boom permanently.

 

The shooting style with 2 cameras all the time wasn´t to difficult. Most of the time our beloved DOP Nik Summerer would give us almost matching headroom. The blocking wasn´t really action-style. But the more static your actors are the cleaner you want the sound. If they run all over the place you accept a certain level of clothing noise. If the walk really slowly or just sit on a table - you don´t wanna hear a single rustle. Sometimes this was a challange.

 

"Dark" got most of it´s audience in foreign countries but still a lot of this audience prefered the original German spoken sound mix. That´s not to often I think - specially in the US.

 

Hope you got an idea of how we worked. Any more questions - ask!

 

 

Matthias

 

Hi Matthias. 

Could you tell us how was the work in scenes with one actor and face to face in two different eras/periods ? 

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Hey Matthias,

 

Great work! Dark has proven to be one of my favorite shows of all time. It looks and sounds great and yes, we watched the German audio version. I can't believe you got by with only a 2 person crew, especially when there were two cameras. Well done.

 

Was the show shot in blocks or was it episode by episode? And were the scripts for all the episodes locked before the season even began? I ask because on a lot of TV, rewrites happen all the time, but because of the time travel and so many repeated locations, I was wondering what the approach was. Also, how are the showrunners/writers/directors to work with?

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Thanks! Glad you enjoyed the show! It’s amazing how Dark as a German show was received by an international audience.

Our Director Bo is the coolest person you will meet in this business. Season 1 was a lot of pressure on him and sometimes it would get heated on set. Season 2&3 were much more calm.

 

We shot by locations and actors availability. Script got changed and tweaked every now and then. No set was stripped down in case we needed it again. That’s the advantage of a studio shoot.

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  • 6 months later...

What a great discussion! Thank you for the great read.

I discovered "Dark" way before I joined this forum. Because I didn't want to disturb my wife while watching it, I used my IEMs instead of my 9.1 system. Everything about the production was A++, the sound panorama was amazing as were those weird and ominous synth music FX. (I believe some of those same synth patches were used on a Norwegian show I just watched called "Equinox".)

 

Now I'll have to go back and listen again to the original soundtrack - maybe with my full speaker system - to be able to enjoy Matthias' work more completely. Money Heist, too, which we can't wait for a Season 4.

 

THANK YOU from the consumer side of the world.

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