The sound mixer we worked with last year had returned to France. In the small city of Santa Rosa, it was a challenge to find another professional sound technician. In this situation, we could only turn to God and pray that He would send us another experienced technician to join our production team. One day, Charles remembered Samuel Yin, who lives in LA and was a retired sound engineer for a well-known worship music band. He had often provided “sound” advice to us for our previous movies. When we called him and asked for his availability, he said he had just been thinking of us while washing dishes before receiving our call. He gladly accepted our invitation and drove hundreds of miles to Santa Rosa to do the field recording. He even rejected our offer to arrange accommodations for him during the shoot and insisted on paying for his own expenses. We were immensely grateful for his professional experience and his meticulous attention to detail. For one of the scenes shot in a noisy Japanese restaurant, he found a way to hide the microphone in a can of chopsticks to capture high quality audio recordings.
Although Yin was an answer to our prayers, asking him to make that drive each time we needed a field recording would be unsustainable. Then Kate Yang, who works for Lucas Film as an animation sound engineer, stepped in to train Eli as an alternative sound man, providing greater flexibility for our shooting schedule.