×

Fantasy Studios Unveils State-of-the-Art Mixing Theater

Fantasy Studios today will unveil its refurbished 1,820-foot Fantasy Film Center in the Bay Area, used for sound mixing.

Formerly the Saul Zaentz Film Center, the full-service theater in Berkeley seats 50 guests and has been revamped to include the latest technologies, all the while conserving the feel of the original 1981 theater.

Over 200 films have been mixed at the Fantasy Film Studios, including the Oscar-winning classics “Amadeus,” “The English Patient,” “The Right Stuff,” “Blue Velvet” and “Boogie Nights.” The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences also does screenings at Fantasy Film Studios.

“When I put the question to top people in the industries we service, ‘what would you think if we reopened the third floor mix stage?’ everyone responded unanimously,‘Fantastic!’ They all raved about the sound and build quality of the room, as well as the convenience and comfort,” said Fantasy Studios’ director Jeffrey Wood.

“We are proud to have achieved the re-build in an exceptional way, so that it is compatible and comparable with all of the top mix theaters. Fantasy Film Center was constructed like a musical instrument. The clarity and detail of the room is beautiful and it’s perfect for precision mixing,” he said.

Popular on Variety

Originally designed by screening room designer Jeff Cooper, the renovation was overseen by Bay Area engineer Jim Austin along with Alberto Hernandez and James Gangwer of Fantasy Studios in collaboration with Meyer Sound and Avid.

The Meyer Sound cinema system was updated by adding to two previously installed 650-P subwoofers. The theater’s new 5.1/7.1 system comprises three Acheron 80 screen channel loudspeakers, 10 HMS-12 surround loudspeakers, and a Galileo loudspeaker management system with one Galileo 408 and one Galileo 616 processor for system drive and optimization.

Having used Avid Pro Tools digital audio software in all its rooms since 1999, Fantasy Studios has installed the Avid Pro Tools | S6 modular control surface in the revived mix theater. The theater now includes ISDN connectivity and is directly linked to the large reverb and chamber collection in Fantasy Studios.

Apocalypse Now,” “Good Will Hunting,” “Fellowship of the Ring,” “Sixth Sense,” “Moneyball,” “Finding Nemo” and “Toy Story” have all had post-production work done at Fantasy Studios and Fantasy Film Center. It also has been the home of many video-game recording sessions, including for Sony, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, Telltale, and Somatone.

 

More Artisans

  • call of the wild

    'The Call of the Wild' Editor David Heinz on Creating Emotions for a CGI Dog

    “The Call of the Wild” editor David Heinz has worked on “The Jungle Book” and “War for the Planet of the Apes,” but this movie starring Harrison Ford and an animated dog named Buck was different. “If you think about it, the lead of the movie is fully CGI and never speaks,” he said, also [...]

  • Portrait of a Lady on Fire

    'Portrait of a Lady on Fire' Cinematographer, Costume Designer on the 'Painterly' 18th-Century Look

    “Painterly” might be an overused term to describe a certain aesthetic of period cinematography, informed by candlelit interiors and sweeping outdoor compositions. But it seizes the essence of French writer-director Céline Sciamma’s deeply feminist 18th-century gay romance set on the coast of Brittany, “Portrait of a Lady on Fire,” which debuted in theaters on Valentine’s [...]

  • Zombies 2 Disney Channel

    How Disney Channel's 'Zombies 2' Production Team Made Monsters Kid-Friendly

    Traditionally spooky creatures like zombies and werewolves get the Disney treatment in “Zombies 2,” the follow-up to the 2018 hit TV-movie musical of the same name. While the undead have now assimilated into the community of Seabrook, they’re confronted by a new set of outsiders: werewolves. Milo Manheim and Meg Donnelly return as Zed and [...]

  • MCC theater presents 'Alice By Heart'

    Steven Sater on Adapting 'Alice by Heart' From a Musical to a Book

    When producers approached lyricist Steven Sater (“Spring Awakening”) to adapt Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” into a musical, his initial reaction was to recoil. His initial thought was that the book didn’t have a beginning, middle and an ending. But Sater pulled it off with his production of “Alice By Heart.” After an off-Broadway [...]

  • Debbie Allen Gracie Awards

    Black History Month: Celebrating African American Choreographers and Dancers

    When you think of famous choreographers, one of the first people who probably comes to mind is Debbie Allen. Also a dancer, a director and an actress, she has done it all. Allen made her Broadway debut in “Purlie,” but gained recognition as Lydia Grant in both the TV and film versions of “Fame.” She [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content