May 13, 1999

I took half a day off from work today and arrived at Harvestworks in the afternoon to begin work on the M&E tracks with Paul Geluso.  Before very long, Paul and I discovered that Harvestworks' backup of the HONEYMOON original sound tracks, which is the only remaining copy, is somehow corrupt or incomplete, and can't be used....  A period of distress followed.  Fortunately, Robin had made DAT backups of the tracks of her Avid sound mix back in early 1998, before the Harvestworks mix.  I'd brought them along, and it turned out that they were in good enough shape that we could use them to build M&E tracks.  We'll lose all the detail work done during the Harvestworks sound mix, but M&E tracks don't have to be aesthetically perfect, inasmuch as they're going to be overlaid with crude dubbing anyway....

We were able to get about 60% of the tracks finished today, which wasn't bad given our late start.  Paul and I kept going back and forth between a normal, healthy state of filmmaker's perfectionism and a "what the hell, they're only M&E tracks" bad attitude.  I continually had to fight down the feeling that I was mutilating the project I'd worked so lovingly on for years.  Sometimes we'd do a painstaking job on a scene, then review it and be weirded out at the perverted spectacle of a movie with the dialogue magically removed.  When Paul would do a really good job, you could hear, say, the creak of a chair as an actor sits down, even as he or she is chatting away noiselessly the whole time.  I won't be sorry when this job is over.

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