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date: 22 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article appears in the Oxford Handbook of Sound and Image in Digital Media edited by Carol Vernallis, Amy Herzog, and John Richardson. The music for Hollywood feature films and “Triple A” video games has undergone an extraordinary transformation over the past decade. The proliferation of digital technologies has spawned innovative ways of creating film music and has redefined the post-production landscape. Through interviews with prominent practitioners, the soundtrack is illuminated by accounts of compositional and post-production processes drawn from real-world contexts. What becomes clear is that the collaborative efforts of composers and post-production professionals are now indispensible for the channeling of an expanding array of technologies that are being used toward creative ends. Answering to the demands of a dynamic nonlinear medium, the “adaptive music” composed for video games diverges notably in creative practices and modular workflow engaged in by its composers and programmers. These relatively new innovative ways of creating film scores and video game music cross-pollinate, drawing from their respective technologies, proprietary production techniques, and eclectic compositional styles.

Keywords: film scoring, video game music, adaptive music, digital post-production, MIDI mockup, audio director, The Departed, Lord of the Rings

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