|Posted: 17 November 2018 at 3:41am | IP Logged | 20
It was wrong to ever remix the film in 2001, despite comments from
Michael Thau (who oversaw the restoration). According to Thau, they
had stereo tracks and they couldn’t split apart their original mix without
making everything go into mono. That apparently necessitated
replacing the music and the whole mix.
Personally, I think that's a myth and the reality is Thau didn't like the
mix, decided it needed to be upgraded, Donner (for some reason)
approved, and the rest was history.
Comments from Thau from 2006 (when the films were being re-
released and the original soundtrack was being made available) seem
to somewhat confirm this. From this
Q: Can you address at all some of the criticisms that have been voiced
over the sound on the 2001 "Superman" movie versus the original 1978
sound? [Thau was already aware of the problem with the new
"Superman" DVD not including the 1978 audio].
A: I'm dying for [Warners] to get those discs right on "Superman I" and
for everyone to hear what the "Superman I" discs really sounded like.
When you hear how poor that  mix sounds by today's standards,
how brittle it sounded, how many generations of dialogue that had built
up because of lots of the changes they did to the [first] film. Most of the
sound effects were optically recorded sound effects. Optical. Not even
mags. They were on mags. They were using mag at the time but a lot
of the sound effects that people had in the library were recorded
optically. A lot of the big impact sound effects - explosions or something
big breaking what they really were, were big wood rips recorded
optically with distortion in them or electric sparks. I mean, I am anxious
for everyone to hear that original mix.
Friends I know who already have the 4k release say the original mix
sounds stunning. It's a shame that folks seeing the film theatrically
won't be able to hear it.
Edited by Philip Obaza on 17 November 2018 at 3:44am