UPDATE: Collider has admitted that their sources were inaccurate, though they haven’t been terribly forthcoming as to why they trusted their sources so implicitly. No changes have been made to the Dark Knight Returns prologue. The new audio track was simply a digital version of the same thing for theaters still playing their sound in an analogue format. The original story follows.
Breathe an audible sigh of relief, folks. Christopher Nolan seems to be delivering on his promise to alter Bane’s dialogue in The Dark Knight Rises to accommodate for the fact that it’s damn near unintelligible. IMAX theaters carrying the film’s prequel in front of Mission: Impossible: Ghost Protocol have received a brand new audio track carrying minor changes to the sound mixing in said prequel. The very loud background noise of the airplane (see Sean’s full breakdown of the prologue here) has been reduced, allowing Bane’s already-muffled dialogue to be, you know, actually intelligible. I can’t confirm first hand that this is the case, but sources for Collider claim that Bane’s dialouge is “40-50% clearer.”
It’s good to see that Nolan’s understood that the problem wasn’t audiences not being smart/paying attention enough to follow what Bane was saying, but rather that the actual mixing of the scene was the problem. I’m all for a character’s dialogue being unclear, if it’s part of his character or the story, but if key lines and entire scenes are rendered that much more difficult to understand because of a bad mix, that’s a problem. I didn’t have problems understanding Bane in the actual trailer for the film, where there’s no loud plane engine sounds, so here’s hoping that if the rest of the film has moments as loud as the prologue that they’ll be fixed in the same manner.
However, things aren’t precisely clear on the matter as of yet. Hit the jump for further details, including Warner Brothers’s reaction to the breaking news.[Via Collider, IGN]
Collider has also been contacted by Warner Brothers, claiming this story is “absolutely not true,” but Collider has been standing by their source 100%, claiming they have read a letter to IMAX employees about the change AND has heard a detailed description of the changes made to the audio, so obviously either the studio is lying, wanting to make their official announcement the first, or Collider’s getting the wool over their eyes, which I don’t see happening, as those guys tend to be pretty solid journos. No doubt we’ll be returning to this story as the day progresses.
UPDATE: According to IGN: “Since posting the original report, we’ve heard from IMAX execs and an exec for an approved IMAX theater showing the TDKR prologue who said that they have no knowledge of any such letter ever being sent out to IMAX projectionists and they don’t believe there’s any accuracy to the rumor.” There’s now a whole lot of evidence against Collider’s original story, though they remain behind it, as evidenced by Collider EIC Steven Weintraub’s Twitter feed. It’s possible this is entirely a fake, though if it is, I’m astounded that folk as reputable as Collider would fall for a fake story.