It all started in a room in Paris, where sound designer Nicolas Becker and director Darius Marder sat in silence, CNN reports. The room was an anechoic chamber, designed to swallow noise.
The two were preparing for “Sound of Metal,” a film about an American rock drummer and recovering addict who suddenly loses his hearing. Played by Riz Ahmed, Ruben must “learn to be deaf,” reluctantly joining a house for recovering addicts from the Deaf community.
And while the movie’s performances have been lauded and the writing praised (Ahmed and Marder are nominated for Oscars), the film’s sound has taken equal billing.
Becker has already won a BAFTA, along with editor Mikkel Nielsen, and both are now Oscar front-runners.
The film builds sensory empathy for a character who is first shocked by, and then grows accustomed to his hearing loss.