Behind the Mask Artists

Ben Burtt

Age: 75
Born: July 12, 1948

Sound Designer and Supervising Sound Effects Editor


Ben Burtt hosted the film clip in 1978 that demos Boba Fett's initial prototype armor, which was all white.

Burtt later was the sound designer and supervising sound effects editor for The Empire Strikes Back, and then the sound designer and sound re-recording mixer for Return of the Jedi. More recently, he currently does original sound effects for the prequels and all of the Star Wars video games.


"To create the sound for the Slave I, Ben Burtt did what he always did whenever he had to create a sound for a spaceship: look at how the ship was designed, how it looked like, how fast it would move, and what it could do. For the takeoff sound of the Slave I, Burtt combined a trumpet's whine with the horn of his own 1971 Dodge Duster while it was on a desert road." -- From Concept to Screen: Slave I |

"The idea behind this [seismic charges that the Slave I drops to get rid of Obi-Wan Kenobi in 'Attack of the Clones'] weapon and the explosion actually harkened back to what Ben Burtt had tried to create during the production of A New Hope. Burtt experimented a lot with what he called the "space ether explosions," which were explosions in space that were suppose to sound different than explosions you would hear in the atmosphere of a planet. However, Lucas did not like them and ended up going with the sounds heard in the film. To complete the sound effect, Burtt added a delay which would create an audio black hole before the twang of the sonic weapon. This was inspired by real life lightning that you often see before hearing the thunder. The source of the twang itself remains unknown and is something that Burtt prefers to keep a secret. Because it is such an unprecedented thing to have an absence of sound in a movie, the technicians who evaluated the film said that there was an audio problem with the reel which needed to be fixed." -- From Concept to Screen: Slave I |

External Links

  • "Meet Boba Fett" Video 1978 film clip,

  • Last updated: February 20, 2023
    Article ID: 174