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mav_ian said on May 24th, 2012 at 3:20 am

Is it really that bad? There are thousands of sound effects that get re-used over and over again, I notice some (doors opening, hinges creaking, various electronic noises, etc), but I’m sure I miss heaps more.
For the most part I don’t care that much.

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Carl, Wikipedia calls that the Howie scream.

There’s another ubiquitous sound effect from Starcraft, some kind of beep-boop, that I’m trying to think of right now, but I’m drawing a blank. Maybe it was part of an adjutant response?

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Dr. Creaux said on May 24th, 2012 at 8:24 am

I agree, they’ve been using the Wilhelm Scream a bit much lately, and this is coming from a guy who uses it as my incoming text ringtone.

Dr. C

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mygif

As somebody who’s deaf, I’ve never had any problem with hearing the same scream soundtrack repeated over and over again. Whenever I’ve seen the captioned note that somebody screams, I always have a different scream depending on the situation or circumstances. I had no idea that pretty much every Hollywood scream sounded the same.

Well, not every Hollywood scream. Probably not even most of them. It’s just that this one appears in a whole lot of movies. Wikipedia says 225, including TV shows and video games. It appears once in each Star Wars and Indiana Jones movie, but I’ll bet it only appears once in each movie. All these people upthread complaining about MGK pointing it out to them have heard it and probably just didn’t realize they’d heard it more than once. I’d read about it before this, but I don’t think I noticed it in The Avengers or any of the Harry Potter. I can believe it was there and they’ve been overusing it, but it’s far from every single scream in a movie.

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mygif

what about the dragon screech from warcraft 2. you always hear it in movies involving fire.

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mygif

While I’m familiar with it as a sound, have read Burtt’s history of it, etc, I honestly never notice it when watching a movie.

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Mark Temporis said on May 24th, 2012 at 8:59 pm

The Hospital PA one always gets me mentally going into Queensryche’s “Operation:Mindcrime”. The one I really notice every single time, though, is the DOOM 2 Spawn Cube. That and the BFG/Old BSG Viper launch.

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@Doyle: Know just what you mean. It was the effect used for every door opening in Castlevania 64, and as one of the approximately three people who liked that game, I heard it a lot. Now every time I see a creaky door open in movies, a part of me mentally prepares to fight the giant skeletal bull. 🙂

Personally, I didn’t notice the Scream in ‘Avengers’, but I don’t begrudge anyone who did their irritation.

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[…] = 'http://widgets.digg.com/buttons.js'; s1.parentNode.insertBefore(s, s1); })(); TweetShareEmailDoes hearing the “Wilhelm Scream” pull you out of your movie-watching experience? One blogger’s reaction to hearing the famous sound-effect included in “The […]

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Hospital loudspeaker meme I would like to encourage:
Dr. Howard, Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine

Wilhelmina:
The female scream is used at least once a week on The Stephanie Miller Show (heard nationwide on progressive radio stations, and simulcast weekday mornings on Current TV)

Wilhelmania:
Just finished the latest Game Of Thrones. Were those Wilhelm parodies? LOTS of them!

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mygif

I’m glad I don’t know what a Wilhelm scream is

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cheetah111 said on October 27th, 2012 at 10:45 am

Well here’s my take on it if anyone cares to read this far down…

I think eventually, most people will start to recognize that scream. It’s so specific, that once I had noticed it, I heard it everywhere.

It is kind of fun to find it but it does remove you from being immersed in the action a bit.

And I’m not sure if the baby laughing is the one I’m thinking of but the one that gets me is that high pitched Gerber Baby cooing sound (ahhh-haaa). That one irks me a bit too. 🙂

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cheetah111 said on October 27th, 2012 at 10:47 am

Oh, and I hear that scream in almost every cartoon my son watches too.

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mygif

I do know of quite a few sound effects.

There`s a low eagle sound I hear in many tv shows. I first heard it on a videogame. Then theres a level up sound from the same game used in a big name commercial.

There is also a turning paper sound I hear alot. I heard it first on transylvania for the N64 in the menus.

A metal creeking noise I also hear quite often repeatedly used was the gate noise in Jet Force Gemini for the N64.

It’s just that the wilhelm can be used a bit better then a gate creeking.

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mygif

I found this blog by googling, “I Hate The Wilhelm Scream”.

Thank you for posting a blog about what I was thinking. I haven’t seen The Hobbit yet, and I happened to be watching a TV interview with the Lead Art Director who showed a couple clips. And right there, as a goblin fell off a bridge, was that accursed Wil-f*cking-helm-Idiot-scream! I cursed out loud, very violently and more than once as I was reminded that one of my favorite book’s movie adaptation was in effect ruined by that boring old trope.

It really makes me seethe with anger every time I’m ripped out of my suspension of disbelief and firmly planted into “Hey, jerk, you’re watching a movie and none of this is real, sorry about that $13 sucker!”

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mygif

I have to look at the numbers for last year, but it could be that it’s use is declining http://oliverfrancis.net/2012/02/10/wilhelmscream/

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[…] lika förtjusta i Wilhelmskriket som Burtt och hans kollegor. I samband med fjolårets The Avengers skrev bloggaren MightyGodKing att skriket förtar filmupplevelsen och krossar illusionen. Andra ser […]

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pancakes said on March 10th, 2013 at 1:28 am

Truth. I didn’t even know this was a thing until tonight. I just noticed it in yet another movie I was watching, and went searching for annoying re use of common Hollywood screams. when people on the outside of your joke start getting annoyed, it’s time to move on, Hollywood. there’s already a severe shortage of creativity and originality in your industry. there’s no need to pollute perfectly good movies with inside jokes that have long since run their course.

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mygif

I could not agree more. When a sound guy thinks he’s being cool by adding that immersion-breaking crap for the sake of a shitty in-joke, he’s basically giving out a huge middle finger to every single person on the film crew who is working hard at making the movie an immersive experience to begin with.

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mygif

Dear sound effects / nerd, seriously grow up. The Wilhelm is no longer funny, let it go, try to get a date, move out of your parents house, and, more importantly, let the Wilhelm Scream finally die. Unless you can’t get a date, move away from your parents, just can’t be original. Even an “in” joke ceases to by funny when it’s overused.

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Jnvdtinxtjjf said on August 12th, 2013 at 1:15 pm

It isn’t in any Harry potter movies, so I don’t know what you’re talking about… It definitely isn’t overused, and it’s still a funny inside joke, and after reading all these comments, most people don’t know about it which makes it even better! If you think using the scream means filmmakers are being lazy or uncreative, then think again, because making a movie is so much hard work already, why bother re-using a scream if not for a purpose? And the purpose is to be funny! I don’t see how so many people here have failed to understand this…

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mygif

Really? You’re watching a movie about a giant green anger monster, a guy in a flying suit of armor, an unthawed WWII super soldier and a Norse god fighting a legion of aliens and it’s the Wilhelm Scream that breaks you suspension of disbelief?

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mygif

I created some Wilhelm Scream related merchandise. I don’t think it’s overused, yet!

http://stuffyouwillbuy.com/shop/wilhelm_scream.aspx

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Tired of the scream said on December 2nd, 2013 at 8:58 pm

“Not a Cry Baby Movie Fan” tried to point out that it’s done on purpose but fails to realize that we already know that. The author is trying to explain that it’s just not as hilarious and/or subtle as the sound engineers seem to think that it is.

I’m no movie buff, nor do I do any kind of sound editing; I’m just an average movie watcher, yet even I can clearly recognize this sound effect when it is used. I’ve recognized it for many years and grew tired of it long before I even knew what it was called. Sure, not everyone recognizes it, but please don’t just assume that the general audience won’t notice or care that this sound effect is used and that it will just be your little inside joke.

It’s kind of like inserting a cartoon drawing of Waldo (from “Where’s Waldo?”) into a crowd of real people a live-action movie. If you’re trying to make a ridiculous movie, then maybe something like that would be funny, but if you’re trying to make an action movie, it just doesn’t make sense.

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organizm987 said on January 22nd, 2014 at 12:51 am

Yes, I agree 100% for exactly those reason you mentioned, I thought I was alone in this. It’s made even worse when it’s used in suspenseful moments. It’s OKAY in comedy films though but still a sign of laziness.

And yet, sadly there is a die-hard fan base for a scream of all things.

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I’m shocked a sound editor would still want to use any part or form of the Wilhelm Scream. Once Family Guy started using it, that should have been the obvious clue that it was time to move on. It stands out like a sore thumb. It ruins the tone of any scene it appears in. And when I hear it in films like Lord Of The Rings I just have to hang my head. Any film that uses it should lose half a star these days. It’s like the sound editors just want to be like every other schmuck before him/her. “Me too! Me too! I want to use it too!” This is not creative. Obviously not original. It is no longer some secret connection to other sound editors. You are cheapening every single production you put it in. How about being the revolutionary sound editor that starts the trend of never using it?! It’s so sad that it would be revolutionary. Don’t try to be slick and alter the scream or use one of the other less-used recordings from the Wilhelm Scream set. Just don’t. Step up and be professionals in your field. Please stop ruining films or any TV show trying to be more serious than Family Guy. Anyone who thinks it isn’t overused just isn’t paying attention. I hear it on nearly every action movie I watch.

Sure there are a few other overly-used samples. For me, the common one of young children laughing and playing stands out. And a couple of the crowd cheering ones. But there is no excuse for the Wilhelm screams. To every sound editor reading this: Every time you want to put in one of these Wilhelm Scream samples I want you to feel dirty. I want you to feel shame. I want you to know that you have now damaged the film you were trying to do a good job with. You make yourself look more amateur and less creative. Less distinctive. Don’t feel like you need to get one under your belt. Just don’t. This is the worst way you can do your job. Whoever is in charge of hiring the sound editor should have a contract that prevents the sound editors from using it. It is an epidemic of awful and someone needs to make a stand.

To those of you just discovering this awful epidemic, it isn’t new. I first read about the scream about ten years ago and it had already been used in hundreds of films. I can’t even imagine how many films have been tainted since then.

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mygif

We are trying to put an end to it by telling the unknown and true story of his widow… The woman who couldnt watch movies.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6ltdHID9JE

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mygif

You people that never noticed that the Wilhelm scream is in countless movies are fucking idiots! THAT ruined your movie going experience? Thats a little dramitic. Wake up, pay attention!

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Whisky13 said on April 23rd, 2014 at 1:40 pm

If this scream “takes you out of the movie” then you are total moron. The Wilhelm Scream is classic & every time I hear it, I consider it a tribute. It also makes me laugh every time I hear it & in no way does it take anything away from the film it’s used in. I could ask a thousand people about the Wilhelm Scream & maybe one in that thousand would know what I was talking about.
Your stupid comments make me wanna say AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHGGGH!

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mygif

I know it’s a first-world problem par excellence, but I have the same problem with the Wilhelm scream – I’m watching “The Return of The King” that has a high Wilhelm quotient and every time I hear it, it’s annoying, like an in-joke that’s gone beyond the point of being funny. It does “take me out of the movie” when I hear it,I’m thinking of the sound editor smirking to himself about how clever he’s being and wondering how many of his buddies will pick it up, unaware of how many people know exactly what’s going on. Equally I hate the “diddy laugh” (google it) that appears in so many movies, games and TV adverts when children enter the frame. We have the most “first-world problem” of illnesses – sample sensitivity.

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The in hell scream said on November 8th, 2015 at 8:57 pm

I fucking HATE the wilhelm scream. When I go to see a movie, I’m there for the experience. I’m there for the emotion that comes from the action, suspense etc.

Watching a movie and then having the wilhelm scream put into it is like trying to hang out with friends and having one of your friends repeat the same joke they thought was SO funny while you guys are in the middle of something serious. But instead of being able to stop hanging out with him or her, you’re stuck with them and their fucking joke.

on top of that, while you’re getting pissed off that they ruin every experience, some asshole has to defend them and then it’s the same vicious cycle all over again.

If you’re one of those people who actually likes this form of “immersion sabotage” and thinks it should be defended, do us all a favour and take a week where you watch movies in your free time and then play the audio of the wilhelm scream on loop for that week. Then come back and tell us you still like it.

No, seriously, for 3 hours a night, watch a movie or two with the wilhelm scream playing repeatedly at the same volume level of the movie.

Bonus: I’m reading about the Wilhelmina scream. Is that the one you hear at the start of the song “Deviance” by Slayer?

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mygif

I hate the Wilhelm Scream too and I sincerely hope its use ceases completely and PERMANENTLY very soon. I’m very happy to see that its use is currently on the decline. For me, it ruins every movie and T.V. show and game that it’s in (or at least the spot where it occurs). I wouldn’t even be a bit surprised if this stupid sound is in some commercials as well.

I learned what it is by pure chance (extremely bad luck) back on October 20th. It was an automatically suggested YouTube video, so I watched it out of pure curiosity and now I absolutely regret it. Every time I hear it, I am completely disengaged from the movie, T.V. show or game. I absolutely hate it!

I hope that from now on, all we hear are NEW screams that are specifically recorded for the movie, T.V. show or game. I also hope that we don’t see anything like this ever again, whether that’s some sound effect, visual effect or some other recycled thing that’s considered to be an inside joke. This one wasn’t funny and it pissed off the majority of the people who are aware of it, including me. Now I’m MUCH less likely to buy a movie or game or T.V. show series if I learn that it has the Wilhelm Scream in it.

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