Planet Earth 2: Viewers complain about 'fake' sound effects despite BBC explaining the technology isn't available

'Wildlife filmmakers often turn to sound designers to recreate something that sounds wild'

Jack Shepherd
Friday 25 November 2016 10:31 GMT

Anyone who has watched Planet Earth II will likely acknowledge how utterly amazing the BBC’s latest documentary is: stunning cinematography, tense scenes, and David Attenborough, what’s not to love?

Well, some Twitter users have found the sound effects frustrating - annoyed producers decided to add extra sounds for dramatic effect.

Planet Earth II is gorgeous, but I absolutely hate hate hate the fake sound effects every time something moves,” one person wrote on the social media website.

Another added: “I love Planet Earth, but enough with the sound effects please. A lizard gliding through the air does not sound like a jet.”

The Sun wrote an initial report detailing the outrage and pointing fingers at the BBC for adding post-production noises.

Accordingly, the BBC responded, explaining how the minute sounds were unrecordable due to the “limited range of microphones” currently available.

They told the publication: “Range and ambient noise ensure quite a lot of wild sounds simply cannot be recorded in the field.

“As a result, wildlife filmmakers often turn to sound designers to recreate something that sounds like it would in the wild - a soundtrack that is true to nature.”

[NB: The BBC has clarified the above quotes were not given to The Sun but come from an article posted back in April.]

Most viewers likely know some of the sound effects are added after filming, in part because the frogs, lizards, and leopards don’t have microphones shoved in their faces. Also, most people have enough common sense to know a lizard doesn't sound like a jet engine - like Hans Zimmer's incredible Planet Earth II soundtrack, it purely adds something extra to the sensory experience.

Last week’s episode explored various jungles around the world, answering the question: 'Who would win in a fight, a jaguar or a crocodile?’

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