Francis Ford Coppola’s American Zoetrope film studios, located in California’s Napa Valley, has installed Meyer SoundEXP™ cinema sound systems in three new rooms, including an ADR stage, ADR control room, and a screening room. Consistent EXP monitoring will allow seamless translation between the new rooms and Zoetrope’s existing re-recording stage, which in 2009 became the first facility of its kind to install a complete EXP system.
Coppola, working alongside re-recording mixers Walter Murch and Pete Horner, relied on Zoetrope’s original EXP monitoring system for the final mix of his 2009 release, “Tetro.” Reflecting on the experience, Coppola says, “With Meyer Sound, there has been a tremendous increase in power, yet with distortion eliminated. If the sound were a picture, you would immediately notice how incredibly focused it is, with no blurring.”
Zoetrope’s intimate new screening room, dubbed the Center Theater, has been equipped with Acheron® Designer screen channel loudspeakers, X-800C cinema subwoofers, and HMS-10 cinema surround loudspeakers. The ADR studio has received an EXP system comprising UPJ-1P VariO™ loudspeakers in a 5.1 screen/surround configuration with an X-800C cinema subwoofer. The ADR control room installation has an identical UPJ-1P configuration, with a 500-HP subwoofer scaled to the smaller room volume. All three rooms utilize Meyer Sound’s Galileo® loudspeaker management systems with Galileo 616 processors for loudspeaker system control and optimization.
The programmability afforded by Galileo facilitates flexible and innovative repurposing of studio resources, something that has been a tradition at American Zoetrope since Walter Murch’s pioneering work on “Apocalypse Now.” For example, Zoetrope’s Avid ICON console can be moved from the ADR control room to the ADR stage, quickly converting it to a pre-mix suite.
American Zoetrope’s Rutherford studio is primarily a private facility for use on film projects by Coppola, his family, and close associates. Another frequent user is director Sofia Coppola, Francis’s daughter, who used the facility for the final mixing of “Somewhere”(2010) with noted re-recording mixer Richard Beggs.
Meyer Sound's EXP defines an integrated approach to cinema sound by maintaining the highest performance levels at all stages of the process, from sound design studios through the dubbing stage and finally to exhibition. Built for sonic linearity, EXP systems empower sound designers and mixers to create soundtracks with greater nuance and precision, and also enable cinema operators to reproduce soundtracks at every seat with absolute fidelity.