Crafting Ewokese, Jabba’s Voice, and the Rancor’s Roar

The Official Star Wars SiteHere’s the latest from: StarWars.Com

By Brandon Wainerdi speaks with two Skywalker Sound greats about their Oscar-nominated work on Episode VI.

Ben Burtt and Randy Thom are two legends in the world of sound. Burtt is, of course, known for his early work in shaping the Star Wars galaxy, from the hum of the lightsaber to the beeps of R2-D2. Thom began his journey at Skywalker Sound (then known as Sprocket Systems) on Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, and is still working at the company, with his most recent project as sound designer for this year’s megahit, The Super Mario Bros. Movie.

Burtt (as sound designer) and Thom (as re-recording mixer) worked together on Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, which, at the time, was the most sonically ambitious Star Wars project ever, earning them both an Academy Award nomination. The crafting of the Ewok dialect, the Sarlacc’s squeal, and the Emperor’s Force lightning all presented unique challenges for the young sound team.

To mark the film’s 40th anniversary, caught up with these two friends, who reminisced about their groundbreaking work from four decades ago, as well as their favorite sounds and memories from Return of the Jedi…

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