‘Gaslit’ sound team interview
The sound department for the Starz limited series “Gaslit” earned a pair of Emmy nominations for Best Sound Editing and Best Sound Mixing for a Limited or Anthology Series or Movie. It was the 24th nomination for re-recording mixer John W. Cook II and the second for co-supervising sound editor Kevin Buchholz. Watch our exclusive video interview above.
Cook, who won an Emmy in 2007 for “Scrubs,” is thrilled to be a double nominee this year for “Gaslit” and the HBO Max comedy “Hacks.” He says, “We get so focused on the project that we’re currently working on. Consequently, the stuff that we did six months ago or a year ago tends to fall away in our memories. These moments of getting nominated, I really love the feeling of time to not let this experience go away so quickly. Let’s linger on it. Let’s remember some of the great details that we lived together as a team. That aspect of it is just lovely.”
Kevin adds, “It’s very special to be nominated. We’re only as good as the person you pass it off to. It is a collaborative thing so to be recognized alongside each other is a real thrill. This is the first time I’ve been recognized on my own as a co-supervisor. In that regards it’s a first.”
“Gaslit” premiered on Starz on April 24 and shines its light most prominently on Martha Mitchell (played by Julia Roberts), a big personality and whistleblower who was the first to publicly expose President Richard Nixon’s involvement in Watergate. She was an Arkansan socialite and wife to Attorney General John Mitchell (Sean Penn).
Cook is nominated for the series finale, “Final Days.” “There’s a story point that I really like,” he explains. “There’s also a technical moment. In a lot of ways it’s two tales of negotiating the human experience of power and love. Those two concepts are completely incompatible. I loved the John Dean testimony scene because it was a huge turning point in the Watergate story, but in terms of the love story that Robbie Pickering was telling, it’s John and Mo Dean choosing a little more of the love side than the power side. Obviously it destroys Martha and John Mitchell. But here’s the side of the story where love enables them to save themselves and help, in a small way, save Democracy for us as well. The technical part I loved was the Nixon tapes and the way that we had to weave in a matching of Dan Steven’s and the original Nixon tapes. My job was to take that final step and really match this tape with Nixon and John Dean and to really make it seamless and I thought that was really a lot of fun.”
Buchholz looks back on his “Gaslit” experience as “an opportunity to work with a lot of talented folks. It’s wonderful to be a part of something that already has a sense of gravity and importance, not only in its subject matter but in its cast. It’s exciting to be a part of a team of creatives that understand the weight and gravity of something special. Whenever you’re a part of something when everybody collectively has that feeling of ‘this could be something very special,’ the best things come out.”