Twitter competition searches for a successor to the Wilhelm Scream

Winning entries will be added to a Hollywood sound effect library

Think you’ve got a scream worthy of Hollywood? A new competition is looking for blood-curdling cries to add to a library of sound effects - and they're auditioning over Twitter.

The competition has been inspired by the Wilhelm Scream – a 60-year-old sound effect that has appeared in more than 200 movies and become an inside joke for the industry.

The famous scream was first heard in the 1951 film Distant Drums under the stage direction “man getting bit by an alligator” but was given its name after its use in the 1952 flick The Charge at Feather River where it accompanied the death of one Private Wilhelm.

It was then picked up by sound engineer Ben Burtt who was so taken by its odd tones that he started inserting it into his productions, including all of the Star Wars and Indiana Jones films.

Successive generations have kept the scream’s legacy alive through the decades, and the distinctive cry can be heard in the likes of Up, Toy Story 3, and Twilight: New Moon (see below for a video compilation of the scream’s greatest appearances).

Would-be successors to Wilhelm are encouraged to record their scream via an app of their choice (audio only or video too – the likes of VideofyMe are suggested for recording) and upload it to Twitter with the hashtag “#hallowscream”.

Winning entries will be added to the back catalogue of De Wolfe (a supplier of screams, shouts and miscellaneous noises to the industry for nearly a hundred years) with the whole array of shrieks set to be judged by the fancy dress retailers Angels - itself a supplier of movie props (of the costume variety) for decades.

The closing date for the competition is 15 November, click here for more information.

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