Audio- Description, directors statement by Raina Haig





The job of audio-description, or audio-vision, is to communicate a film's key story elements that would otherwise be missing for a blind or partially sighted person in the audience:

'Lily-pad on a lake. A frog leaps. Plop!'

Location. Protagonist. Action:

Essential story components.

Without knowing that a frog leaps from a lily-pad on a lake, it would be impossible to interpret the sound 'plop!'

The audio-description is a narration, crafted into the soundtrack along with dialogue, spot effects and music.

The art and production of audio-description has been developed by specialist units, or individuals, who create and record descriptions as an add-on to an original film production.

My idea is to incorporate an audio-description 'extra' as part of the regular film post-production process. The production of 'Drive', my graduation film, with financial support from UK's Sports and Arts Foundation and Royal National Institute for the Blind, enabled me to test this idea.

This is an economic production model. It ensures an audio-description track is available as an 'extra' for digital distribution, and all other formats. It opens a potential area of employment to screenwriters and actors. Politically, it is an inclusive approach, offering visually impaired audiences equitable commercial choices and artistic quality.