Ron Judkins ’75, who studied filmmaking at SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts, has been nominated for an Academy Award in the Sound Mixing category for his work on the movie Lincoln, which leads the Oscar field with 12 nominations.
Judkins previously won Academy Awards for Best Sound for Jurassic Park and Saving Private Ryan, movies also directed by Steven Spielberg, who has been nominated this year for his direction of Lincoln. Judkins also was nominated for his sound-design skills on Schindler’s List and War of the Worlds, also directed by Spielberg.
Judkins is currently working on his own film, Neighbors, which he wrote and directed. He and his producers used Kickstarter, an online fundraising platform for creative projects, to raise money to complete post-production on the movie. They surpassed their $18,000 goal in November.
“In May 2011, we started principle photography on my film Neighbors. We cut the film until September 2011, at which point I went to work on Lincoln, and then I went back to working on Neighbors in January 2012,” he says. “We are very close to finishing the film.”
Judkins calls Neighbors, “a comedy-drama about a graphic novelist facing down a midlife crisis.” The film stars Michael O’Keefe, Catherine Dent, Blake Bashoff, Julie Mond and Sean Patrick Thomas, and it includes many of Judkins’ own neighborhood friends.
After graduating from SMU, Judkins worked as a sound recordist in Dallas before moving to Los Angeles in 1979. In addition to working as a sound engineer on major motion pictures, Judkins is also an independent filmmaker. His first film, The Hi-Line, debuted at Sundance in 1999. He also has produced several independent films.