A brief history of the “Wilhelm scream.”

A few weeks back I tried to explain to my wife what the Wilhelm scream is after remarking about it while watching some movie that I can’t recall the name of at the moment. She had no idea what I was talking about so it’s rather fortunate that I stumbled across the following video compilation of the scream in use. You’ll note that George Lucas is very fond of this cliche sound effect.

 

6 thoughts on “A brief history of the “Wilhelm scream.”

  1. Cool Compilation smile There’s also that overused “yeeeaaarrrgh!” scream. And I’ve also noticed a lot of movies, TV shows, and even games like to borrow sound effects from the classic Doom games.

  2. I am pretty familiar with the animations shown in the compilation and will be queueing up Beauty and the Beast, Toy Story, and Aladdin to check. I am suspicious that in at LEAST the case of Toy Story, that scream was dubbed in after.

  3. My education continues.The scream’s too much like a musical note with everybody singing the same note and all in the same key. Maybe the directors send all the screamin’ actors to the Wilhelm Academy of Screams.

  4. This kind of thing is pretty common.  I’ve noticed a lot of sound effects that get recycled are in video games too; people screaming, doors opening, monster growls.  They’re easy to recognize in movies and TV if you’ve heard them dozens of times already in a game.

  5. The Toy Story clip seems a little dubious to me as well…

    If you’re familiar with StarCraft, I hear the sound effect used when Terran building land in movies very frequently.

    I don’t know where it originated from, but I heard it first from SC.

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