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New Member: Midge Costin's Soundscapes

Midge holds the Kay Rose Endowed Chair in the Art of Sound Editing at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. She is the first to hold this post, given by George Lucas and Steven Spielberg in 2005, and for over 25 years, she has been a feature film sound editor having freelanced at every major studio in Hollywood.

Broken Arrow
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Director John Woo’s breakneck action film about the chase to regain stolen nuclear warheads is another amped-up ride from the filmmaker, and the sound editing required for the lengthy, frequent action scenes is a blistering crash course in how to ratchet up suspense with each perfectly timed sound effect.

Crimson Tide
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Midge received the first of her two Oscar nominations for Sound Editing for this tense Tony Scott submarine drama with Gene Hackman and Denzel Washington, which won the MPSE Golden Reel Award for Best Editing. She would earn a second nomination for her work on Michael Bay’s Armageddon (1998).

Dead Again
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An ode to classic Hollywood mysteries with a supernatural twist, Kenneth Branagh’s reincarnation whodunit unfolds over two different time periods in L.A. united by one central murder. The extremely dense sound mix of the film required pinpoint precision to edit the barrage of thunderclaps, chase scenes, and breathless revelations into a convincing cinematic whole.

Hocus Pocus
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Now a go-to Halloween classic for all ages, this Disney production is a treat for the eyes and ears with its modern fairytale atmosphere reflected in the crafty manipulation of sound to create a world of magic lurking on the edges of modern suburbia. Cackling and rushing autumn wind have never sounded this much fun. 

Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound
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A fascinating tribute to the art that created the soundscape of motion pictures, this documentary, produced and directed by Midge, features interviews and a peek behind the curtain with some of the biggest names in the field. 

© 2023 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences