The Sound Design Of Star Wars

In this video, via Indepth Sound Design, Ben Burtt tells the story of his sound design work for the original Star Wars (now Star Wars Episode IV).

Topics covered:

00:00 Lightsaber
03:32 R2-D2
07:57 C-3PO
10:10 Jawas
11:26 Blasters
13:17 Tusken Raiders
14:20 Landspeeder
16:13 Mos Eisley Cantina
18:56 Greedo
20:44 Ship Pass-bys
21:39 The Force
22:22 Darth Vader
26:18 Chewbacca (Wookie)
29:13 Dejarik
29:56 Hyperdrive
30:41 Death Star
31:59 Telemetry
33:52 Garbage Masher
35:31 Mouse Droid
36:02 P.A. Voices
36:58 Radio Voices
39:10 Tie Fighter
41:02 Y-Wing
41:52 Sound people… or worse

8 thoughts on “The Sound Design Of Star Wars

  1. The ingenuity of Foley sound effects people was amazing compared to todays ‘synthesize everything’ – not that there’s anything wrong with that! Love my Nagra 🙂

  2. So good. Wish there was more about how the whole thing was put together. Easy to see it with computers but damn, all of that foley with tape???

  3. I saw him do a presentation like this in my hometown about eight years ago or so.
    What’s missing from this video here that he told us in the live show (and probably omitted due to copyright issues) was what the source was for the character Garindan (or “Long-Snoot”), the spy who tells the Stormtroopers in Mos Eisley where the droids are. It’s a “found tape” from the movie studio’s dumpsters of test tapes of John Wayne reading a script.

    Found. In. A. Dumpster.
    Speed up and run through an Arp or Moog that Burtt was using for most of his processing and filtering.

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