Skip to content
1981
Volume 13, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1751-4193
  • E-ISSN: 1751-4207

Abstract

The article explores the ways in which the boundaries of cinema are being tested by the transformation of historically formed lip-synching conventions by recent pop music films. While films based on computer-generated imagery rely on the familiar conventions of synchronizing images with the embodied voices of recognizable singer celebrities to regain an impression of corporeality, films created by and starring these same popular musicians choose to forgo this cinematic synchronization aesthetics. This asynchronization is not presented as an interruption within the film, as was often the case in the past, but rather as an alternative to sound cinema’s established vocal conventions of gender and race, as well as its hierarchies of technologies, industries and platforms.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1386/ts_00015_1
2021-10-01
2024-07-13
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

References

  1. 2n Design ( 2019;), ‘ Guava Island Theatre, Coachella 2019. ’, YouTube, 28 June, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OgwtHSyI5Bk. Accessed 15 July 2021.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Altman, Rick. ( 1980;), ‘ Moving lips: Cinema as ventriloquism. ’, Yale French Studies, 60, pp. 6779.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Altman, Rick. ( 1987), The American Film Musical, Bloomington:: Indiana University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Altman, Rick. (ed.) ( 1992), Sound Theory, Sound Practice, New York:: Routledge;.
    [Google Scholar]
  5. Atlanta ( 2016–present, USA:: FX Productions and MGMT Entertainment;).
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Barry, Iris. ( 1926), Let’s Go to the Pictures, New York:: Payson & Clarke Ltd;, https://archive.org/details/letsgotothemovie008067mbp. Accessed 1 September 2021.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Belton, John. ( 2014a;), ‘ If film is dead, what is cinema?. ’, Screen, 55:4, pp. 46070.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Belton, John. ( 2014b;), ‘ Psychology of the photographic, cinematic, televisual, and digital image. ’, New Review of Film and Television Studies, 12:3, pp. 23446.
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Buckle, Gerard Fort. ( 1926), The Mind and the Film: A Treatise on the Psychological Factors in the Film, London:: G. Routledge & Sons, Ltd;.
    [Google Scholar]
  10. Carroll, Noël. ( 1985;), ‘ The power of movies. ’, Daedalus, 114:4, pp. 79103.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Chion, Michel, and Zakir, Paul. ( 2019;), ‘ Vowels/consonants: The legend of a “gendered” (sexual) difference told by cinema. ’, in M. Feldmand, and J. T. Zeitlin. (eds), The Voice as Something More, Chicago:: University of Chicago Press;, pp. 24974.
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Clover, Carol J.. ( 1995;), ‘ Dancin’ in the Rain. ’, Critical Inquiry, 21:4, pp. 72247.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. Cooley, Josh. ( 2019), Toy Story 4, USA:: Pixar Animation Studios and Walt Disney Pictures;.
    [Google Scholar]
  14. Curtis-Hall, Vondie. ( 2001), Glitter, USA:: Twentieth Century Fox and Columbia Pictures;.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Dickinson, Kay. ( 2008), Off Key: When Film and Music Won’t Work Together, New York and Oxford:: Oxford University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Doane, Mary Ann. ( 1980;), ‘ The voice in the cinema: The articulation of body and space. ’, Yale French Studies, 60, pp. 3350.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Donen, Stanley, and Abbott, George. ( 1957), The Pajama Game, USA:: Warner Bros;.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. Donnelly, Kevin J.. ( 2014), Occult Aesthetics: Synchronization in Sound Film, New York and Oxford:: Oxford University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Dyer, Richard. ( 2002), Only Entertainment, , 2nd ed.., London:: Routledge;.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. Dyer, Richard. ( 2012), In the Space of a Song: The Uses of Song in Film, Oxford:: Routledge;.
    [Google Scholar]
  21. Eidsheim, Nina Sun. ( 2019), The Race of Sound: Listening, Timbre, and Vocality in African American Music, Durham, NC:: Duke University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. Emerson, John, and Loos, Anita. ( 1920), How to Write Photoplays, New York:: James A. McCann;.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Favreau, Jon. ( 2016), The Jungle Book, USA:: Fairview Entertainment and Walt Disney Pictures;.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. Favreau, Jon. ( 2019), The Lion King, USA:: Walt Disney Pictures and Fairview Entertainment;.
    [Google Scholar]
  25. Fenn, Hayley. ( 2019;), ‘ Big marionette, little marionette. ’, Opera Quarterly, 35:4, pp. 33549.
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Feuer, Jane. ( 1977;), ‘ The self-reflective musical and the myth of entertainment. ’, Quarterly Review of Film & Video, 2:3, pp. 31326.
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Fleeger, Jennifer. ( 2014), Mismatched Women: The Siren’s Song through the Machine, New York:: Oxford University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  28. Fleeger, Jennifer. ( 2019;), ‘ When robots speak on screen. ’, in The Oxford Handbook of Voice Studies, Oxford Handbooks, New York:: Oxford University Press;, pp. 41936.
    [Google Scholar]
  29. Frank, Allegra. ( 2019;), ‘ Donald Glover and Rihanna’s surprise film Guava Island is streaming free for a limited time. ’, Vox, 12 April, https://www.vox.com/culture/2019/4/12/18308343/guava-island-donald-glover-rihanna-how-to-watch-free-streaming. Accessed 15 July 2021.
    [Google Scholar]
  30. Frigau Manning, Céline. ( 2012;), ‘ Singer-machines: Describing Italian singers, 1800–1850. ’, Opera Quarterly, 28:3&4, pp. 23058.
    [Google Scholar]
  31. Goodwin, Andrew. ( 1992), Dancing in the Distraction Factory: Music Television and Popular Culture, Minneapolis, MN:: University of Minnesota Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  32. Great Pretenders ( 1999–2001, USA:: Fox Family;).
    [Google Scholar]
  33. Jonze, Spike. ( 2013), Her, USA:: Annapurna Pictures;.
    [Google Scholar]
  34. Kelly, Gene, and Donen, Stanley. ( 1952), Singin’ in the Rain, USA:: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer;.
    [Google Scholar]
  35. Knowles-Carter, Beyoncé. ( 2020), Black Is King, USA:: Walt Disney Pictures and Parkwood Entertainment;.
    [Google Scholar]
  36. Laderman, David. ( 2010), Punk Slash! Musicals: Tracking Slip-Sync on Film, Austin, TX:: University of Texas Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  37. Lasseter, John. ( 1995), Toy Story, USA:: Walt Disney Pictures and Pixar Animation Studios;.
    [Google Scholar]
  38. Lawrence, Amy. ( 1991), Echo and Narcissus: Women’s Voices in Classical Hollywood Cinema, Berkeley, CA:: University of California Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  39. Lip-Synch Battle ( 2015–present, USA:: Paramount Network;).
    [Google Scholar]
  40. Lotz, Amanda D.. ( 2021), Media Disrupted: Surviving Pirates, Cannibals, and Streaming Wars, Cambridge, MA:: MIT Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  41. Major, Anne. ( 2022;), ‘ Not streaming near you: FilmStruck’s failure and the demise of the cinema-specific model. ’, Popular Communication, 20:1, pp. 6076.
    [Google Scholar]
  42. The Masked Singer ( 2019–present, USA:: Fox Entertainment;).
    [Google Scholar]
  43. Maurice, Alice. ( 2002;), ‘ “Cinema at its source”: Synchronizing race and sound in the early talkies. ’, Camera Obscura, 17:1, pp. 171.
    [Google Scholar]
  44. Miller, Marc. ( 2000;), ‘ Of tunes and toons: The movie musical in the 1990s. ’, in W. W. Dixon. (ed.), Film Genre 2000: New Critical Essays, Albany:: SUNY Press;, pp. 4562.
    [Google Scholar]
  45. Mochkin, Nikolay. (@ellejart) ( 2019;), ‘ And somewhere in the multiverse fans are watching this version of the film…. ’, Instagram, 24 July, https://www.instagram.com/p/B0ThqQHo-Gn/. Accessed 15 July 2021.
    [Google Scholar]
  46. Münsterberg, Hugo, and Langdale, Allan. ( 2013), Hugo Münsterberg on Film, New York:: Routledge;.
    [Google Scholar]
  47. Murai, Hiro. ( 2015), Sober, USA:: Doomsday Entertainment;.
    [Google Scholar]
  48. Murai, Hiro. ( 2018), This Is America, USA:: Doomsday Entertainment;.
    [Google Scholar]
  49. Murai, Hiro. ( 2019), Guava Island, USA:: New Regency Productions;.
    [Google Scholar]
  50. Pettman, Dominic. ( 2017), Sonic Intimacy: Voice, Species, Technics (or, How to Listen to the World), Stanford, CA:: Stanford University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  51. Provenzano, Catherine. ( 2019;), ‘ Emotional signals: Digital tuning software and the meanings of pop music voices. ’, Ph.D. thesis, New York:: New York University;.
    [Google Scholar]
  52. Ragona, Melissa. ( 2013;), ‘ Doping the voice. ’, in C. Vernallis,, A. Herzog, and J. Richardson. (eds), The Oxford Handbook of Sound and Image in Digital Media, New York:: Oxford University Press;, pp. 15469.
    [Google Scholar]
  53. Rösing, Lilian Munk. ( 2011;), ‘ The hysteric’s guide to Pixar: On voice and gaze in Toy Story 1–2. ’, International Journal of Žižek Studies, 5:4, http://zizekstudies.org/index.php/IJZS/issue/view/25. Accessed 28 April 2022.
    [Google Scholar]
  54. RuPaul’s Drag Race ( 2009–present, USA:: World of Wonder Productions;).
    [Google Scholar]
  55. Siefert, Marsha. ( 1995;), ‘ Image/music/voice: Song dubbing in Hollywood musicals. ’, Journal of Communication, 45:2, pp. 4464.
    [Google Scholar]
  56. Silverman, Kaja. ( 1988), The Acoustic Mirror: The Female Voice in Psychoanalysis and Cinema, Bloomington, IN and Indianapolis, IN:: Indiana University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  57. Smith, Susan,, Brown, Noel, and Summers, Sam. (eds) ( 2018), Toy Story: How Pixar Reinvented the Animated Feature, New York and London:: Bloomsbury Publishing;.
    [Google Scholar]
  58. Spring, Katherine. ( 2008;), ‘ Pop go the Warner Bros., et al.: Marketing film songs during the coming of sound. ’, Cinema Journal, 48:1, pp. 6889.
    [Google Scholar]
  59. Tinwell, Angela,, Grimshaw, Mark, and Williams, Andrew. ( 2011;), ‘ Uncanny speech. ’, in M. Grimshaw. (ed.), Game Sound Technology and Player Interaction: Concepts and Developments, Hershey, PA:: IGI Global;, pp. 21334.
    [Google Scholar]
  60. Vandegrift, Tamiera. ( 2019;), ‘ Here’s why fans are hating The Lion King remake. ’, Showbiz Cheatsheet, 15 August, https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/heres-why-fans-are-hating-the-lion-king-remake.html/. Accessed 15 July 2021.
    [Google Scholar]
  61. Vernallis, Carol,, Herzog, Amy, and Richardson, John. (eds) ( 2013), The Oxford Handbook of Sound and Image in Digital Media, New York:: Oxford University Press;.
    [Google Scholar]
  62. Wright, Julie Lobalzo. ( 2019;), ‘ Animation and the star body. ’, Film-Philosophy, 23:2, pp. 194211.
    [Google Scholar]
  63. Zulli, Diana, and Zulli, David James. ( 2020;), ‘ Extending the internet meme: Conceptualizing technological mimesis and imitation publics on the TikTok platform. ’, New Media & Society, 26 December, https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444820983603. Accessed 28 April 2022.
    [Google Scholar]
  64. Nechushtan, Tomer. ( 2022 [2021];), ‘ Mouthing off: Contesting cinematic synchronization in digital music media. ’, The Soundtrack, 13:1, pp. 4359, https://doi.org/10.1386/ts_00015_1
    [Google Scholar]
/content/journals/10.1386/ts_00015_1
Loading
  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): animation; digital cinema; lip-synchronization; platforms; pop music; singing; voice
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a success
Invalid data
An error occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error