Slugging the Sheets
The term “slugging the sheets” does not refer to physically punching the exposure sheets with your fists, rather it is the process, at each stage, of filling the exposure sheet in by each of the contributing people.

These are the people who fill out the exposure sheet in order of appearance:

1) Sound Technician
2) Director
3) Layout
4) Animator
5) Camera Operator
6) Director

The sound technician is the first person to fill in the sheets. They take the information directly from the sound track and “break down” the individual sounds. Break down means that they listen to the track and as they hear each sound they write it down on the exposure sheet at the appropriate frame. This is done phonetically. This means that it’s written as it “sounds” not as it’s written on paper. At the same time they would also write down the sound effects on the corresponding frames.

The director then goes over the sheets and indicates where specific action is to take place. Chuck Jones would fill out the exposure sheets himself as well as drawing the main key poses, similar to layout poses. These would indicate the specific timing that the director wants.

The layout artist may or may not fill in the sheets. Sometimes the responsibility of filling out the camera moves falls to the director and sometimes the camera operator.

The animator is then responsible for filling out the levels section. The animator may write in a rough version after they do some thumbnail sketches (see the next section for more on this) or they might wait until they’ve done all the key poses. They might even wait until they do a pencil test themselves and play around with some of the timing as they shoot it and then fill the sheet in.

Once the animator is satisfied with the action taking place on the screen and they feel the timing is right, they then fill in the final numbers.

The director then has the final say on the scene after it has been cleaned up and inbetweened by the assistant animator and then pencil tested. If the director is satisfied with the results, they then sign their approval of the scene.

The entire scene then moves on to the next stages of production. The layout background moves into the background painting department, the animation moves to the scanning department where it is then colorized and composited with the corresponding background and overlays (if there are any).

Soundtrack Breakdown Steps

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