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Looping Lines

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This is where a live-action actor is called back to record their lines again in a booth, usually because their dialogue was not recorded satisfactorily on location. Officially known as ADR, which stands for "automated dialog replacement" (Though, in spite of the name, the process is not done automatically)

The fun part? Now the actor gets to do the line with the intended emotions, without the possible disadvantages of doing so on-location. Alternatively, the actor in question may not be available or the role calls for a different voice from that of the on-set performance. Requiring another actor cast to fill in as either a soundalike to the original, or to dub over the original if deemed unsatisfactory. This technique is also used when an actor's character is in a setting where it would be very difficult, if not impossible, for the sound gear to pick their voice up on its own, such as while they're driving a car, in the presence of explosions, in a windy area, etc.

There is also a chance that a character has to swear around a child actor. In order to prevent them from learning some new words for the playground, the actor would say something else on-set, and then drop the intended word in the recording booth afterwards.

Another way this can happen is if the actor was simply a reference placeholder, a stuntperson who cannot act well, a stand-in or puppeteer on set, a common practice for people operating puppets, acting in bulky costumes, or if they are playing The Faceless.

There is also Filming for Easy Dub, where the actor/character is made/animated to keep their mouth and facial muscles out of view of the camera to make it easier for the voice actor to change their performance.

This is much more common than you may think. As a rule of thumb, listen carefully to how an actor speaks. If the delivery suddenly sounds much more polished and in the foreground, they've been ADR'd (though a good sound mixer can blend the recording in well enough so it actually sounds like it was said on-location). This technique is used on a wider and more noticeable scale in Asian live-action productions, particularly Bollywood and Japanese tokusatsu and Dorama television serials. There is even a specialized sub-set of voice actors known as "scream artists" who dub screams and grunts over others' performances to better convey emotions and actions while preserving stars' voices and saving time.

The ADR looping process is also typically used for background voices for crowds or other elements of a scene; this process is referred to as "Walla" when it comes to American films and television or "additional voices" for animation. Most times, the actors featured in this group are either grouped together in one large block regardless of whether they looped over a particular actor or served as a background voice or vocal effect, or simply go uncredited.

It's also the standard way to record dialog in dubbed foreign productions and in anime. Western Animation, on the other hand, generally has dialogue recorded beforehand, and the animation is crafted to match their delivery (a technique known as pre-lay), though even it isn't immune to having to rerecord lines on occasion. The writers might come up with a line after the voice actor in question has finished their main lines, and so one of the writers, directors or possibly even the tea lady will read it off as a placeholder for the animators. The ADR part comes in when they bring in the actual voice actor to deliver the line in sync with the finished animation.

Contrast Voices in One Room. Japanese voice recording tends to use both styles at the same time – all the actors are in the same room clustered around three microphones, but 98% of the time they are acting to pre-made lip flaps (very few anime are recorded pre-lay style; AKIRA is the major exception).

Not to be confused with Welcome to Corneria, which is when videogame NPCs say the same dialogue over and over again, or Repetitive Audio Glitch, which can cause sounds to loop.


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  • Star Wars uses a lot of looping in its live-action films.
    • Most famously, Darth Vader.
      • For the original trilogy, David Prowse played him in the suitnote  but James Earl Jones dubbed over the voice, as Prowse's high-pitched, West Country voice sounded too silly for an intimidating villain. Prowse wasn't informed of this until the movie came out.
      • This would be done again in Revenge of the Sith, with Hayden Christensen wearing the Darth Vader suit and James Earl Jones reprising his voice role.
      • And again in Rogue One, with Spencer Wilding in the suit this timenote  and Jones still providing the voice.
      • By Obi-Wan Kenobi, James Earl Jones had retired from the role. So Hayden Christensen played Vader in the suit while Vader's voice was provided through ReSpeecher technology, which took samples of Jones' voice and used AI to transform the lines Christensen spoke on set.
    • On the opposite side of Prowse's situation, Anthony Daniels was originally intended to only be C-3PO's suit performer, but his performance was so charming that he was allowed to also do the voice. He still had to dub over his lines, as the suit made his voice nearly impossible to discern on film. Remarkably, decades later the same thing happened with Ahmed Best's portrayal of Jar Jar Binks.
    • Very noticeable in A New Hope as dialogue tends to fluctuate in volume and intonation even in the same scene. In this film, almost none of the Imperial actors even have the same voices as their onscreen performers.
    • For similar reasons to Darth Vader in the original trilogy, Darth Maul was portrayed by Ray Park but dubbed over by Peter Serafinowicz in The Phantom Menace. While Park is a champion martial artist who gave Maul a sinister physicality, he has a squeaky voice and strong accent that would have made it hard to take the character seriously. This also occurred later in Solo: A Star Wars Story for Maul's surprise cameo, though Serafinowicz was replaced with Sam Witwer, who had previously voiced Maul in Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels.
    • In the original cut of The Empire Strikes Back, the Emperor was portrayed on screen by Marjorie Eaton (with fake eyes superimposed on her face) while voiced by Clive Revill. The 2004 DVD release saw this Emperor replaced by Ian McDiarmid, who has played the character in all his film appearances since Return of the Jedi. Boba Fett, meanwhile, was portrayed by Jeremy Bullochnote  and voiced by Jason Wingreen, though Wingreen was replaced by Temuera Morrison from the 2004 DVD release onward, since Attack of the Clones established that Boba was a clone of bounty hunter Jango Fett, whom Morrison portrayed in said film.
  • The Lord of the Rings — the entire trilogy — was dubbed in post: the enormous noise of the on-set fans and the assorted background noise made it impossible to hear any of the dialogue spoken while recording. The only audio that was recorded on the set was Bilbo's speech at the party, as Ian Holm couldn't recreate the drunk tone while looping those lines sober. That gave the sound editors quite some work.
  • In the pre-Internet, pre-videotape, pre-digital era of actual filmed pornography, sex scenes were typically filmed without sound; performers would then add all the various grunts, groans and exclamations afterward. Most of the time this would be done haphazardly, with only minimal care for any visible Mouth Flaps; this often added an unintentional Hong Kong Dub quality to the scenes.
  • Hugo Weaving as V in V for Vendetta had to dub all of his lines, both because of the mask and because the character was originally played by James Purefoy, who left a few weeks into filming. Due to the mask, they only had to redub rather than reshoot Purefoy's scenes.
  • Significant portions of Deep Blue Sea had to be re-dubbed because of an outbreak of crickets on the underwater base set.
  • Tallulah Bankhead infamously had to loop a line in her final movie Die! Die! My Darling! (or Fanatic in the UK), it should have only taken a few minutes but instead it took 8 hours because Bankhead was near to drunk and could not remember a basic sentence. There is even a play based on this event called Looped.
  • Because of his film directing commitments, Frank Oz was unavailable for most of the principal filming of both Muppet Treasure Island and Muppets from Space. Other puppeteers would perform his characters during filming, with Oz providing ADR in post-production.
  • In Dr. Strangelove, there is a noticable scene where Major Kong is saying "Dallas" but you hear "Vegas," a case of Distanced from Current Events based on the recent assassination of JFK in Dallas.
  • The "chompers" scene in Galaxy Quest features Sigourney Weaver's character seeing the completely nonsensical hallway full of banging metal blocks and exclaiming, "Screw that!"—except that from the movement of her mouth it's entirely clear that she originally said "fuck." Presumably the line was looped to keep the film to a PG rating. There are also a couple of other lines in the film that don't disguise the dub as well.
  • This was standard practice in many Italian movies until about The '80s. Films with multilingual casts (such as many Spaghetti Westerns) were often shot without any microphones on set, and with each actor saying his lines in his own language. Hence, these films do not have one original or "official" language track; every version is a dub.
  • A good chunk of the dialogue from The Descent had to be dubbed in, because the sets were polystyrene and sure didn't sound like a cave or rock while they were walking or moving around on it.
  • Cillian Murphy rerecorded all of his lines for 28 Days Later during Post Production, replacing a faux-British accent with his natural Irish accent because he thought the British accent sounded too fake. Several shots were actually set up to accommodate ease of ADR (faces in shadows, the actor out of frame etc) and a handful of new lines were added to otherwise wordless scenes.
  • An infamous goof in Eegah! was a result of the botching of one of these: at one point, while the main characters are walking, one of them suddenly "shouts" "Watch out for snakes!" despite the fact that the character obviously isn't speaking and the quality of the line's audio not matching the rest of the movie.note  As such, "Watch out for snakes!" has become a Running Gag on Mystery Science Theater 3000, (where Eegah was shown) and went through a bit of Memetic Mutation as well. Eegah himself was portrayed by Richard Kiel but voiced by Arch Hall Sr., who was also one of the leads.
  • The scene in Love Actually where Aurelia removes the cup holding down a portion of the book Jamie is working on had to be redubbed due to the noise of the large fan sitting off camera.
  • The earlier James Bond films, in general, relied heavily on ADR due to the amount of noise generated by action sequences. The 007 Stage at Pinewood Studios, the world's largest stage, is a silent stage, as its primary use is for big action scenes.
    • In the earlier Bond films, all the dialogue would be redubbed in post-production. Such as in Dr. No, where almost every female character was dubbed by Nikki van der Zyl. Van der Zyl, who made a career out of dubbing other actresses, would dub over various actresses in Bond films all the way up to Moonraker.
    • In Dr. No, the decision was made to have Bond work for the fictional MI-7 rather than the real MI-6 after filming was completed. Because of this, Bernard Lee had to shoehorn "seven" into the space where he said "six" as M lectures Bond over his choice of weapon.
    • For Goldfinger, Gert Fröbe had to be redubbed by Michael Collins. Fröbe didn't speak much English and he couldn't perform naturally in an unfamiliar language so he, instead, focused on his physical performance and moving his lips fast enough to look as if his character spoke English fluently. That said, there are a few moments where you can tell this is in play, as his voice sometimes plays without his mouth moving.
    • Thunderball shows Q introducing Bond to his new tricked-out briefcase, accompanied by the line "Now pay attention, 007". This line would later become one of many famous motifs in the series, but Desmond Llewelyn does not move his mouth.
    • On Her Majesty's Secret Service has Bond impersonate a posh, upper-class professor to infiltrate a SPECTRE hideout, and his voice is replaced by that of the Professor during these scenes in order to establish him as a Voice Changeling. Like other early Bond films, there are also some moments in the film that make it obvious which lines are ADR, such as varying mic quality, lines being cut and spliced, voices being heard without the actor's mouth moving, etc.
    • There is a downright jarring occurrence in No Time to Die, during the aftermath of the Cuba bar shootout. Bond pours himself and Paloma a drink quick drink, while a voice easily one or two octaves lower than Daniel Craig's snarks, "three weeks training?" and then the original audio resumes.
  • In Hot Fuzz, Simon Pegg redubbed most of his lines from the second half of the movie to make his voice sound more like an 80s action hero.
  • A visible example shows up in The Godfather: Sollozzo learns that Don Vito Corleone is still alive after the assassination attempt he ordered, and says to hostage Tom Hagen "That's bad luck for me, and bad luck for you if you don't make that deal!" before apparently releasing him. However, if you look closely you see that Sollozzo just says "That's bad luck for me, and bad luck for you": there was a short scene that was present in the book but cut from the film, where Tom Hagen arrives back at home and exclaims "Boy, if I argue against the Supreme Court I'll never do better than I did against that Turk tonight!", having convinced Sollozzo not to kill him on the grounds that he could still negotiate a deal with Sonny despite the Don being alive.
  • Evil Dead 2 has Ash, after his hand has been possessed, screaming and running around, then saying very distinctly "Work shed." Those two words were looped in ADR, and it sounds like it. In fact, Bruce Campbell relates on the commentary that years later, when he met Kurt Russell for the first time, Russell walked up to him, shook hands, and without preamble demanded Campbell "say 'Work shed'."
  • Army of Darkness contains quite a lot. Just about every scene featuring a crowd of people has numerous looped-in lines of extraneous dialogue dubbed over the action, without much indication as to which bit character is actually supposed to be saying any of it.
  • According to the post-production supervisor, Super Mario Bros. (1993) had the most ADR-looping of any film she had ever encountered.
  • Quite a bit of dubbing was going on in the last half of Dazed and Confused. It's not terribly noticeable except when one character is visibly speaking (and gesturing dramatically) and you're hearing a different character's voice. Then it's odd.
  • Happens all the time with Tommy Wiseau's lines in The Room (2003), for no adequately explained reason. Even in the interviews on the DVD, looped sentences and fragments appear seemingly at random. It's incredibly obvious whenever it happens, because the words don't match up to the lip flaps at all.
  • In Dracula (1979), the dialogue just before Dracula sucks Lucy's blood had to be looped because the dramatic fog machines made too much noise.
  • During the opening of Hell Up In Harlem, lead character Tommy Gibbs is sitting in a taxicab that's being pursued by two mob henchmen. At several points, Gibbs can be heard saying lines (such as "Run that red light!", "Step on it, man! They got guns!" and "Here's $500 - don't stop for anything!") that don't match up to his mouth. This is due to the fact that Harlem rewrites the ending of Black Caesar with different dialogue placed in existing scenes.
  • When filming Popeye, some of Robin Williams' mumbling was so incomprehensible he had to re-record the dialogue and add it later.
  • Some Like It Hot: Tony Curtis' dialogue when he was dressed up as a female was dubbed by Paul Frees since Curtis had too deep of a voice to do a proper falsetto. He did attempt it during filming though, and one or two of his quick lines slipped through. Notably, Frees also had a small on-camera part as the owner of a speakeasy.
  • In Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Spock and Saavik briefly discuss Kirk in Vulcan. Leonard Nimoy and Kirstie Alley shot the scene in English but Nimoy decided it would be more appropriate for the two Vulcans to have a private conversation in their native tongue. So, Nimoy developed Vulcan words that matched their mouth movements and he and Alley dubbed over the scene in post-production.
  • In Back to the Future, Crispin Glover (George McFly) lost his voice due to nervousness while filming. For some scenes, he had to silently mouth his lines, with his voice being dubbed in later at a recording studio.
  • Bane's dialogue in The Dark Knight Rises had to be looped twice, as feedback from an earlier version of the film found that his voice was too muffled. Compare the original to the final version.
  • Many instances in the Clue feature film. For example, in one scene, the police rush the mansion and Martin Mull's Colonel Mustard throws his hands up in surrender, exclaiming "I'm only a guest!" However, his lip movements don't match the words being said, and in fact one TV spot for the film featured the unaltered scene; Mull actually said "I'm only a dinner guest!", with very different tonal inflections.
  • The President's Analyst - during production, J. Edgar Hoover apparently expressed his disapproval of the portrayal of his agency, the FBI (and his own proxy character), so they changed the name to the FBR (Federal Board of Regulation), along with the CIA, now the CEA (Central Enquiries Agency) - footage already shot has obvious overdubs for the name changes. A disclaimer at the film's beginning heavily lampshades this.
  • Mallrats had to have quite a bit of ADR, mainly to remove references to a Deleted Scene and its accompanying plot thread. Further ADR was then used on a censored version that aired on ABC in 1998 and was reused for basic cable screenings into the early 2010s; it was even more noticeable because the new voiceovers didn't match with the original voices (especially Jay's).
  • For no known reason, all of the dialogue in Dancin': It's On! was ADR'd by the original actors.
  • Saving Christmas has a scene where several characters "talk" while holding coffee mugs over their faces to "hide" the fact that the actors' lips weren't actually moving at the time. It's not very convincing.
  • In Ryan's Babe, all of the dialogue is like this. It's executed so poorly, at one point, one guy says his line, followed by the line from another guy responding to him.
    Bill: I'll have another one, Jim! No more today, Bill! Please escort this gentleman to the door!
  • In The Ipcress File, Harry Palmer is speaking about an American agent but Michael Caine's lip flaps clearly show that he actually said "CIA agent" on set and dubbed "American agent" over that shot in post.
  • Actors in the Marvel Cinematic Universe have to do a lot of looping for scenes when they're in their hero costumes because the material squeaks whenever they move.
  • Suspiria (1977) was shot with the full knowledge that it was going to be dubbed later on. As it was filmed with a cast of many different nationalities, there were as many as three different languages being spoken in scenes at a time (Udo Kier was completely dubbed with an American accent for the English release). This was standard procedure for Italian films for decades.
  • Romeo and Juliet (1968) was heavily dubbed, especially the famous balcony scene, due to traffic noises that could be heard in the background. Olivia Hussey recalls having to ADR her next film All the Right Noises and the filmmakers being shocked that she dubbed her whole part in only two hours - thanks to having to do so for Romeo & Juliet.
  • Children of the Living Dead - a zombie B-movie from the 80s - had a lot of post-production dubbing when the original scriptwriter got annoyed that the director had cut many lines that he felt didn't work. Notable instances included having Tom Savini suddenly saying loads of Pre Mortem One Liners as he's shooting up the zombies in the opening (one shot has him say "surprise" before he fires, even though his mouth clearly doesn't move). The original silent ending where Matthew takes Laurie to the cemetery to show her his "shattered dreams" was changed into a first date scene with ADR done over the wide shots.
  • What I Stand For had to have a lot of ADR done, as the location used for the bunker was not too far from a main road with traffic drowning out the audio. When Laura Flynn had to dub grunts and noises for her fight scenes, Zac Goold recalls someone nearby asking if they were making a porn film.
  • Rebecca Mader sometimes tells the story at conventions that she was once in a horror film where the audio was mostly unusable - as they filmed next door to a dog sanctuary, and the barking kept interrupting scenes. She then had to ADR "six weeks of screaming".
  • In John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum, the Adjudicator's first confrontation with the Bowery King was looped due to the rain falling in the scene. Laurence Fishburne's dismissive laughter was kept as it was recorded on-set, resulting in a sudden shift in audio quality.
  • The Friends of Eddie Coyle: There are a few lines that are obviously dubbed to change what the characters say. One is when Eddie states his age, and another is when Brown first meets Andrea.
  • The Wicker Man (1973): All of Willow's lines we redubbed by a Scottish actress because the original actress had a Swedish accent that would have been inexplicable for her character. The voice doesn't match her lips at all in a few places, such as when she wakes Howie up the morning after she tries to seduce him.
  • In Carrie (1976), the boy on the bicycle shouting "Creepy Carrie!!! Creepy Carrie!!!" was played by director Brian De Palma's son Cameron, but his voice was dubbed by Betty Buckley, who played the gym teacher, Miss Collins. Cameron's actual voice is heard in the trailer.
  • There were also cases of ADR redubbing during post-production on Thomas and the Magic Railroad, especially at the time during post-production where PT Boomer was cut out of the plot, so some lines had to be redubbed by the actors due to referencing the deleted character and/or the original plot.
  • Orson Welles's Macbeth had to be made on a low budget, with a 23-day shooting schedule. So the dialogue was all pre-recorded and played back during shooting, even though it was all filmed in the studio.
  • The original Little Shop of Horrors was mostly filmed in the studio, with sound. But there are two long scenes filmed on location, with almost no dialogue. But in the second one, Mr. Michnik has one line, which doesn't match his mouth movements, and the first, Seymour is just screaming, but it's still obviously dubbed.
  • Manos: The Hands of Fate was filmed in the 60s without using microphones and was dubbed in post by only 3 people; the 2 leads and another guy. It is extremely, distractingly obvious - among other things, when the Master's wives debate whether or not to kill Michael's family, the dubbing makes it sound like one of the wives contradicts herself from sentence to sentence. Reportedly, the little girl playing the daughter cried when she heard how she was dubbed.
  • Home Alone: Daniel Stern was required to have a live tarantula on his face when the prop one wasn't working. Because Stern didn't want to frighten or harm the tarantula while it was on his face, the legendary scream coming from his mouth was actually Stern miming, and an off-set recording of Stern screaming was edited over the top.
  • It's standard practice in filmed musicals to record the songs first and then have the actors mime singing and dancing to them, effectively being the inverse of looping lines. The advantage of this method is that there's already a "perfect" take ready, so the actors can focus on the more complicated choreography. Les Misérables (2012) was done in reverse — all of the singing was done on-set, and the score was composed according to that. As a result, the songs are very unusual from a musical standpoint, with the performances and tempo being dictated by the acting.
  • The Snowman (2017) is infamous for having a ton of ADR due to an incredibly fraught production. Due to a heavily truncated shooting schedule, 10-15% of the script remained unfilmed, and additional voiceovers were required to stitch the plot back together (it's especially obvious during Shot/Reverse Shot scenes that focus on characters speaking while the camera is focusing on the back of their head). Additional work had to be specifically done for Val Kilmer — he was filmed during his battle with throat cancer, and his performance has been almost entirely re-dubbed by a different actor.
  • Sky High: Royal Pain (who’s also Sue Tenny/Gwen Grayson) was physically played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead in full costume, but voiced by Patrick Warburton with the helmet on.
  • Doctor in Distress (1963): When Dr. Sparrow says "What?!" in Sonja's flat, his original dialogue has been dubbed over as the word doesn't match his mouth movements.
  • Holiday on the Buses: When the Butlers say goodbye to Blakey after he tells them the dance competition is off, they have all been dubbed over as none of their mouths move.
  • When filming his part of the "Every Sperm is Sacred" segement of Monty Python's The Meaning of Life, Graham Chapman didn't shout "cock" out of consideration for the child actors on set. Instead, he used the word "sock" and looped "cock" in later.
  • Twice Round the Daffodils: When John asks Henry if he's swallowed a dictionary, the audio has obviously been dubbed over as no one's mouth can be seen moving.
  • Carry On Behind: Ernie's cries of "Phwaaay!" during Veronica's striptease were clearly dubbed over later as Jack Douglas' mouth does not move.
  • One of the first films to come up with the idea of "Bespoke crowd Walla" was Jaws, which used it for various beach scenes. Both Michael McKean and Harry Shearer were among the ADR cast for this film.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Anthony Stewart Head had to loop many of his lines as Giles on Buffy the Vampire Slayer in order to incorporate the character's mild stutter. This was such a hassle that Head declared he would never play a character with a speech impediment again.
  • The Babylon 5 episode "Comes the Inquisitor" was originally broadcast with Sheridan referring to the historical murders in London's West End. Unfortunately for JMS, the historical Jack the Ripper committed murders in London's East End. The error was pointed out in a Usenet post and corrected for the subsequent broadcast, in spite of misgivings by the writer given that the original scene had the camera was right on Sheridan's face for the whole scene. Watch his mouth, and it's very obvious he says "West" when the audio says "East".
  • The first Charmed (1998) episode "Something Wicca This Way Comes" has a scene outside the manor where Piper says to Phoebe "don't tell me you spent last night flying around on a broomstick" - which is a different audio level to the rest of the dialogue and is also said while Holly Marie Combs's head is facing away from camera.
  • During his 37-year run as the host of Jeopardy!, Alex Trebek often re-recorded his reading of a clue in post if he stumbled over a word, but this didn't require lip-synching because the screen usually showed the text of the clue rather than his face. This was taken to its logical extreme in a week of episodes in 2015, where all of the clues were re-recorded in post due to Alex having a cold at the time of taping that left him sounding very rough. A disclaimer was added at the start of episode indicating as such.
  • Lost required a lot of looping because almost all of the action was filmed outdoors in Hawaii. The ambient noise at times covered up the dialogue.
  • It has been suggested that Donald Trump looped his boardroom speeches on The Apprentice. This may be to complete the editing "story" about why someone is getting fired, or simply to insert something more eloquent than what was actually said.
  • This is the standard method of recording lines in Super Sentai despite the fact that it's Live-Action TV: the actors act out their scenes in front of the camera and then re-record every single line in a recording studio. According to one director, this is by far the hardest part of production, and also explains why most characters end up in a Milking the Giant Cow situation.
  • Used for comic effect in Garth Marenghis Darkplace as part of the Show Within a Show's Stylistic Suck. Sometimes the looped lines blatantly miss the Mouth Flaps, or characters will yell lines of expositions without moving their lips. One scene ends with a minute-long sequence panning across random objects in the room while two characters rapidly fire off looped exposition from off screen in a clumsy attempt to fix plot holes in post.
  • The Made-for-TV Movie KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park was heavily looped. This led to Peter Criss, already fed up with the filming and his bandmates, refusing to loop his lines — so all his dialogue was looped by a voice actor. This is hardly the only problem with the movie, but it's by far the most glaringly obvious.
  • The early Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Battle" featured the appearance of Picard's old ship, the Stargazer. The show was shot to the original script before the model shots of the ship were filmed, which had intended to use the old movie Enterprise model to represent it, and Laforge names it as a Constitution-class ship. However, the producers then changed their mind and made up a new model representing a previously unseen class. Levar Burton then redubbed his line using a similar-sounding but different class name, Constellation.
  • Very rarely a line is dubbed over quickly days or hours before broadcast of a series to remove a line in the wake of a tragic event where a punchline which was fine days before would now go over like a lead balloon, as in when Lauren Graham redid a Gilmore Girls one-liner punchline about Bali to instead be Maui days after the Bali nightclub bombings. However the Closed Captioning track had already been laid down (which is much, much more complicated to fix, requiring almost a complete re-do of a scene), so viewers with it on still saw the Bali reference.
  • Scrubs:
    • In "My Best Friend's Mistake", Dr. Cox is yelling at Elliot and begs to "Aisha", even though it's very obvious for anyone watching his mouth that he's saying "Allah".
    • In a Season 4 episode, Dr. Cox imitates making a call with a phone from the early 20th century. At one point during the imitation, he spouts a few repetitive lines of gibberish, which don't match the movement of his lips at all.
      • In an odd inversion of this trope, in the same season, it is apparent during the breakfast table conversation between J.D., Turk, Carla and Neena that for some reason, none of their lines were re-recorded in the studio. There's background hiss and it really sounds like none of the lines were recorded close to a microphone.
  • On TV shows like Glee and Victorious where the cast is singing, they will lip sync to a prerecorded track of themselves singing so the audio quality is better and so they can concentrate on dancing instead of singing and dancing at the same time.
  • The Doctor Who episode "Midnight" had a lot of ADR, because it was essentially filmed as if it were a play. So much so that the corresponding Doctor Who Confidential episode was pretty much entirely about the ADR process.
  • The looping in of lines in Burn Notice isn't very smoothly done, and there are strong changes in ambient noise and acoustics that are sometimes overly noticeable.
  • A lot of reality shows include ADR-looping to explain the rules over and over each episode, for the audience's sake. This is very noticeable in shows like Project Runway and Top Chef.
  • Averted in the classic The Twilight Zone (1959) episode "The Eye Of The Beholder". Two different actresses played the main character, one with the bandages on and one with them off. The latter actress was told that they'd dub in the former's voice after filming... but she was on set during the filming of the bandaged scenes, and as a result she managed to mimic the other actress's voice well enough that they didn't need to.
  • When The Avengers (1960s) switched from videotape to film in season 4, and Emma Peel became John Steed's new partner in crime, the show's shooting became more flexible: For on-location scenes outdoors, they would be shot mute, with the dialogue being rerecorded by the original actors in post-production (as was the norm for British television at the time).
  • In the Even Stevens pilot, the characters' voices never match their lips when they say "Stevens". The family's name was changed from Spivey to Stevens after filming and the new name was looped in before the episode aired.
  • Arrested Development uses audio looping to a very noticeable degree, though whether it's to get different line readings or to rework scenes after the fact is unclear.
  • In The Goes Wrong Show, during "A Trial to Watch", Henry Lewis's character Robert Grove originally says "Oh, this is bollocks!" while trying to get out of the courtroom set. However, since the episode aired before the watershed, the BBC forced him to redub "bollocks" as "cobblers".
  • In the episode of The Greatest American Hero that aired only three days after Ronald Reagan was shot by John Hinckley Jr., two occasions where the students addressed the protagonist as "Mr. Hinkley" were hurriedly and very obviously dubbed over with a drawn-out "Mr. H", and in at least one case manifestly not by the actor speaking on screen. Two other instances took place at an airport and were masked with the noise of an airplane taking off, but one use of "Mr. Hinkley" late in the episode made it through anyway. (After that, the character's name was carefully avoided in the scripts until he suddenly became "Mr. Hanley.")
  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch "Wild Wild Witch" - over the crane shot of Sabrina walking through the town, an obvious dubbing has her announcing she'll look in the sheriff's office for clues - presumably to make it clearer why she walks into the office in the very next scene with no explanation.
  • Jesus of Nazareth had to do this a lot to cover for many of the Moroccan locals in bit parts who had limited English. Franco Zeffirelli eventually got in the habit of shooting some scenes with the full intention of sending the actors to the studio later to dub the lines.
  • From Poirot:
    • In "Murder on the Links", Giraud's dialogue is completely looped over. This causes a bit of a clash in audio quality as the episode uses on-set audio for the rest of the cast and Giraud's looped lines causes the ambient sound to cut out.
    • In "One, Two, Buckle My Shoe", two girls are repeatedly shown playing hopscotch while singing the titular rhyme. However, their voices are dubbed over by grown women trying to sound like young children while also singing the rhyme in a slow and creepy manner (despite the girls clearly being cheerful on camera).
  • On Castle, especially towards the end of its run, Castle and Beckett would be portrayed from a distance by body doubles while the characters' dialogue was looped by Nathan Fillion and Stana Katic separatelynote .
  • All of the callers to Frasier's radio show were celebrity guests whose lines were dubbed in after filming. On set the lines were usually read by Arleen Sorkin who is married to one of the producers.
  • The cast of Galavant recorded their vocals ahead of shooting, but also sang live on set. The producers then mixed and matched these vocals in post, leading to fluctuating audio quality during musical numbers. They kept the mixed vocal tracks on the soundtrack releases as well.
  • Live-action Star Wars TV shows, like the movies, rely heavily on actors dubbing over masked performers and puppets. Some actors, such as Pedro Pascal and Emily Swallow, alternate between looping dialogue and performing it on the set, depending on their schedules and the scene's physical demands.

  • It's pretty common to overdub vocal and instrumental parts for live albums and concert films in a studio in post-production for much the same reasons as looping lines in movies. For example, a guitar part might be re-recorded to get rid of feedback.
  • Looping may also be used to Bowdlerise a song's radio edit if the full version has a word that radio would be hesitant to play. For instance, "Toes" by Zac Brown Band censored the line "I've got my toes in the water, ass in the sand" by looping in "toes" again to cover up the word "ass".

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Happens rarely here due to most wrestling being taped live, and content that they don't want to air is just edited out completely. But two notable exceptions.
    • When LayCool split in 2011, the original segment taped for Smackdown had Michelle McCool challenge Layla to a "loser leaves Smackdown" match. However, in the episode that aired on TV, the last word was changed to "WWE" over a shot of Layla. This was due to Michelle deciding she would retire, and a Loser Leaves WWE match was a good way to write her off TV.
    • Paige was still the reigning NXT Women's Champion when she was booked to win the Divas' Championship on the main roster. She had however already filmed a match where she was pinned by Charlotte Flair on NXT a month in advance. They inserted a new backstage segment where Paige was stripped of the NXT title, edited out the entrance of the match (showing Paige still carrying the title) and dubbed a new commentary track to match the new continuity.

    Stand-Up Comedy 
  • The album version of the Bill Cosby comedy special Bill Cosby: Himself, in addition to abridging many of the sketches, also loops lines at least twice: at one point, to cover up a flubbed line about "brain damage", and at another point in the "Chocolate Cake for Breakfast" skit when he accidentally says that he was awakened at 4 AM instead of 6 AM.

    Web Original 
  • Dr. Horrible. Everyone singing is their own voice, but it's a dub of the official musical track over the scene. So they're essentially lipsynching to themselves. This practice is near-universal for filmed musicals, due to the difficulties of having a full orchestra (or even a partial one) on set during filming, of coordinating an offstage band to an on-camera singer (who can't be looking at the director), and of having to do multiple takes - more people involved means more chance for error, and when even one screw-up requires a do-over, it's far, far easier to simply prerecord the tricky bits. In addition, it means that choreography can be quite elaborate without having to worry about breathless singing.
  • Channel Awesome has done this a few times:
    • One Nostalgia Critic crossover where he gets teleported to the other creator's room had to be dubbed over by Doug and him due to somehow losing the audio for it.
    • In Atop the Fourth Wall, when Linkara is leaving Lord Vyce in a barren universe, Lewis dubbed over his lines due to weather conditions.
    • Linkara's Atop the Fourth Wall movie also has this in places. Most notably in the famous "I AM A MAN" punch scene. It's mostly noticeable due to a mix of Lewis' delivery, th mic quality, and the audio levels creating a weird mix.
    • JesuOtaku redubbed a lot of his live action skits in his episodes from 2009-2011 for quality reasons, but left his first review alone to show how far he came.
  • One episode of Tom Scott's Things You Might Not Have Known series, "Nearly Everything You Hear in the Movies is Fake," discusses this trope (as well as The Coconut Effect). Scott also throws in some Painting the Medium to illustrate the difference: Everything before 0:47 (save for the end) in the video was recorded on location, while everything after was dubbed over later. However, the video grossly over-exaggerates ADR's presence in film, which got corrected by several post-production workers in the comments section. Tom now considers the video an invoked Old Shame for bad information, and has since unlisted it.
  • By necessity, as he typically records videos at noisy, crowded theme parks, Some Jerk with a Camera loops lines in many episodes. To try and make it sound a bit less stilted, Tony Goldmark says he records ambient noise in the parks to play over the looped lines. However, Tony's recorded lines still sound crystal-clear compared to when he's using filmed audio.
  • Some Call Me Johnny sometimes does this for a gag. Notably 1 review where he and his brother Elliot talk without moving their lips and just move their jaws up and down in sync with the syllables of the words in the script and then a laugh, where they dub over themselves in post, to mock how characters in a game speak.

    Western Animation 
  • In western animation, standard practice is for the voice cast to record their dialogue, have animators use the audio to animate scenes, and then have the cast return for ADR to better match mouth flaps and add embellishments.
  • Teen Titans Go!: According to a former crew member, William Walter Thompson did voice himself in "Wally T", but because he wasn't a member of SAG-AFTRA, Cartoon Network wouldn't be able to legally air the episode. As a result, Tara Strong had to ADR his lines at the last minute so the episode could be broadcast.
  • For Despicable Me 2, Al Pacino recorded all his dialogue as El Macho but then suddenly cut ties with the film mere months before release. No longer able to use Pacino's audio, the producers hired Benjamin Bratt to take over the role, with Bratt ADR-ing completed scenes to avoid having to reanimate significant portions of the movie.

    In Universe 
  • The plot of Singin' in the Rain centers around silent movie actors learning how to actually talk on camera, based on real experiences as many were Hired for Their Looks and not how they sound. In a desperate attempt to salvage a movie with a shrill lead actress, they realize they can overlay her lines with the lead actors love interest.
  • In Inside Daisy Clover, the eponymous actress Daisy Clover (Natalie Wood) has to do this for a song sequence she filmed, but suddenly has a nervous breakdown in the middle of it and starts screaming uncontrollably (her growing depression with the lifestyle producer Raymond Swan forces on her and her mother dying not long before don't help).
  • Mad About You had an episode when Paul makes a documentary about his family. A sound problem makes him want to loop a sentence his mother said, but she's so taken aback by her normal voice that she overcompensates in her inflections when she re-reads her words. Fortunately, Paul's wife Jamie can do an excellent impression of Paul's mother so she does the looping instead.
  • On The Newsroom, the crew realizes there's a factual error in a package that's supposed to be played in minutes. With no time to pull it, Mac calls the reporter away from dinner with his family and has the guy loop in the correct information on the fly as the package is airing.
  • The Simpsons featured a comical bit where they are talking about watching the current Superbowl, but due to Production Lead Time they had no idea who was playing or where. So the characters were animated with glasses or other items covering their mouths as they say the relevant information with obviously updated dialogue.
  • Reboot (2022), "Baskets": The showrunners have to wrangle Clay, who is terrible at looping his lines. Hannah gets him to do the first two after some prodding, but he keeps messing up the third one. To make matters worse, Timberly comes in and nails an ADR monologue on her first try.

Alternative Title(s): ADR, Automated Dialog Replacement, Automated Dialogue Replacement