In the News


Editing Murder On The Orient Express

2017-11-29 09:15:05 ccwire-staff
In 1974, film director Sidney Lumet brought famed suspense/crime writer Agatha Christie’s best-selling novel to the big screen, along with a big-name-cast that included Albert Finney (as detective Hercule Poirot), Lauren Bacall, Ingrid Bergman, Jacqueline Bisset, Sean Connery, John Gielgud, Anthony Perkins, Vanessa Redgrave and Michael York. The film, Murder On The Orient Express, went on to receive six Oscar nominations at the 1975 Academy Awards, and earned a win for Ingrid Bergman as “Best Actress in a Supporting Role.”
In a 2017 remake, actor/director/producer Kenneth Branagh, along with 20th Century Fox, brings Christie’s suspenseful whodunit back to the big screen. This time, Branagh takes on multiple roles as lead actor (stepping in as Poirot), director and producer, and is joined by a stellar 21st century cast that includes Johnny Depp, Josh Gad, Michelle Pfeiffer, Judi Dench, Penelope Cruz, Willem Dafoe and Star Wars’ Daisy Ridley.
Working closely with Branagh to help bring the 140-page screenplay to the screen, was DP Haris Zambarloukos, composer Patrick Doyle and editor Mick Audsley.
Speaking from the UK exclusively with Post just days before the film’s opening, Audsley discussed the film, its challenges and working with a director, who is also the movie’s lead character.

The editing team of (L-R) Thora Woodward (first assistant editor), Mick Audsley, Pani Scott (associate editor), Sarah Bowden (assistant editor) and Julia Hewitt (editing assistant).

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Editing "War for the Planet of the Apes"

2017-07-27 23:02:16 ccwire-staff
On July 14th, 20th Century Fox released War for the Planet of the Apes, the follow up to 2014’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, which was once again directed by Matt Reeves. The film marks the third in the rebooted franchise (2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes was directed by Rupert Wyatt), and centers around the now mature Caesar, who continues to serve as the apes’ leader. While their colony struggles to coexist with humans, they appear to be gaining an upper hand, as the humans face extinction due to a rapidly spreading, deadly virus.

Editor William Hoy also returned to work on the new release, continuing his collaboration with Reeves. Hoy’s vast credits include Dances With Wolves, both Fantastic Four films, 300, Watchmen, Sucker Punch and Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. He is a member of both the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and American Cinema Editors.

“In this particular picture, almost the entire production called for visual effects,” Hoy explains. “It was dedicated to the performance and characters, which was a real plus for me. That’s what we wanted most out of it. The character and emotional character of the apes and the humans.”

Hoy, who has cut a number of Fox features, was acquainted with a number of people surrounding the project, and has developed a trust with the director. “On the first film, you have to learn to trust each other, and on this film it was a real pleasure to work with him,” says the editor. “We’ve become really good friends and that’s something that’s valuable that I take away from the picture, too.”

Read the full story at Post Magazine.

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Paul Machliss, ACE, and Jonathan Amos, ACE bring a special brand of magic to "Baby Driver"

2017-07-17 10:42:39 ccwire-staff

Writer/director Edgar Wright’s latest outing is a major departure from his normal offering of dark comedies. Unlike his Three Flavours Cornetto film trilogy — Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World’s End — and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, TriStar Pictures’ Baby Driver has been best described as a romantic musical disguised as a car-chase thriller.

Wright’s regular pair of London-based picture editors, Paul Machliss, ACE, and Jonathan Amos, ACE, also brought a special brand of magic to the production. Machliss, who had worked with Wright on Scott Pilgrim, The World’s End and his TV series Spaced for Channel 4, recalls that, “very early on, Edgar decided that I should come along on the shoot in Atlanta to ensure that we had the material he’d already storyboarded in a series of complex animatics for the film [using animator Steve Markowski and editor Evan Schiff]. Jon Amos joined us when we returned to London for sound and picture post production, primarily handling the action sequences, at which he excels.”

Developed by Wright over the past two decades, Baby Driver tells the story of an eponymous getaway driver (Ansel Elgort), who uses earphones to drown out the “hum-in-the-drum” of tinnitus — the result of a childhood car accident — and to orchestrate his life to carefully chosen music. But now indebted to a sinister kingpin named Doc (Kevin Spacey), Baby becomes part of a seriously focused gang of bank robbers, including Buddy and Darling (Jon Hamm and Eiza González), Bats (Jamie Foxx) and Griff (Jon Bernthal). Debora, Baby’s love interest (Lily James), dreams of heading west “in a car I can’t afford, with a plan I don’t have.” Imagine, in a sense, Jim McBride’s Breathless rubbing metaphorical shoulders with Tony Scott’s True Romance.

Read the full story at postPerspective

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“Mr. Robot” Editor Franklin Peterson Enjoyed Season Two’s Creative Freedom

2017-06-07 17:14:33 mgalas

Franklin Peterson was a relative newbie to television editing in 2014.  He’d surpassed the assistant-to- editor hurdle on indie films including “Safety Not Guaranteed” when he had the good fortune to cut director Sam Esmail’s feature debut, “Comet.”  It was Peterson’s work on this film that inspired Esmail to reach out to the editor when he needed an editor to fill in during season one of his hacker-takes-over-the-world drama “Mr. Robot.”

After reading the pilot and seeing a cut, Peterson was hooked.  He joined the team with the season already well in progress.  Working in LA, he was given guidance and updates about the story threads being shot in NY.  While the schedule was far more accelerated than a feature. Peterson found he still had ample time to apply creative editing styles to highlight Elliot Alderson’s (Rami Malek) unusual and often confused world-view.

“I loved getting time to experiment and play,” said Peterson.  “Sam is open to outside-the-box ideas.”

Peterson and the “Mr. Robot” editing team had a heightened sense of creativity in season two, sparked largely in part by Esmail’s direction of each episode.  Able to closely monitor the slightest detail, down to the makes of each characters phone, every scene was richly displaying the world Esmail envisioned.   Despite his oversight on set, Peterson and the editing team were encouraged to continue to find the most creative way to tell the story in the edit suite, including the use of jump cuts, long to short takes, and other out-of-the-box means that would lend to exploring the personality of each character.

Unique to the experience of editing “Mr. Robot” was the ability to shuffle scenes around in an episode, sometimes even between episodes.  The entire editing team would gather to sit and discuss set ups they were working on that offered mutual feedback for the unique experimentation Esmail encouraged.  They also ensured, throughout their unique edits, that the characters retained a humanity, specifically Elliott, who’s unique way of seeing the world often verts against his humanity.

The unique eye tracking that comes with the extreme angles in “Mr. Robot” Peterson recalled using in “Comet”, however he was apprehensive about the extremely dark visuals in season two.    Peterson credits DP Tod Campbell for carving out actors features with a handful of light, or finding the proper balance in the backlit shots.

“The art of it all fits, but there were always massive wide shots and plenty of extra coverage to work with,” recalled Peterson.

Sound design enhanced a major storyline reveal in the opener’s double episode.  Peterson worked with sound team to underscore Elliott’s movements with rolling door and clinking of metal sounds, creating an off-balance sensation for the viewer while avoiding obvious reveals.

Most important in the unusual editing process was ensuring they responded to the needs and emotions of their characters. In a scene highlighting FBI agent Dominique DiPierro’s (Grace Gummer) loneliness and heartbreak, Peterson felt it was best to let her expressions linger without cutting into the scene.

Source: Variety411

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Editing "Kong: Skull Island"

2017-03-23 20:31:55 ccwire-staff

Who doesn’t love a good King Kong movie? And who says a good King Kong movie has to have the hairy giant climbing the Empire State Building, lady in hand?

The Jordan Vogt-Roberts-directed Kong: Skull Island, which had an incredible opening weekend at the box office — and is still going strong — tells the story of a 1973 military expedition to map out an island where in 1944 two downed pilots happened upon a huge monster. What could possibly go wrong?

Rick Pearson

Editor Rick Pearson, who was originally set to come on board for 10 weeks during the Director’s Cut process to help with digital effects turnovers, ended up seeing the project through to the end. Pearson came on during the last third of production, as the crew was heading off to Vietnam.

The process was already in place where rough cuts were shared on the PIX system for the director’s review. That seemed to be work well, he says.

To find out more about the process, I recently touched base with Pearson, who at the time of our interview was in Budapest editing a film about the origin of Robin Hood. He kindly took time out of his busy schedule to talk about his work and workflow on Kong: Skull Island, which in addition to Vietnam shot in Hawaii and Australia.

Read the interview at postPerspective.

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Lillian Benson, ACE to Receive Motion Picture Editors Guild Honors

2017-03-09 16:55:32 ccwire-staff

The Motion Picture Editors Guild (MPEG), Local 700 IATSE, will honor member Lillian E. Benson, ACE with its prestigious Fellowship and Service Award.  Benson will be presented this distinguished honor by director and frequent collaborator Zeinabu Davis at a ceremony taking place Saturday, April 8, 2017 at the Sheraton Universal Hotel.

The Fellowship and Service Award was established 10 years ago by the Guild’s Board of Directors to recognize an individual who embodies the values the Guild holds most dear: Professionalism, Collaboration, Mentorship, Generosity of Spirit and a Commitment to the Labor Movement. Previous recipients of this distinguished honor include Joseph A. Aredas; Donald O. Mitchell; Don Hall; Carol Littleton, ACE; IATSE International President Emeritus Thomas C. Short; Dede Allen, ACE; and Donn Cambern, ACE.

“Lillian E. Benson has a had a long career editing influential and socially conscious films, and has been long active in working to increase minority participation in the filmmaking process,” commented Alan Heim, ACE, President of the Editors Guild. “In addition, she has been an active member of the Board of Directors for the American Cinema Editors [ACE] as Secretary and Co-Chair of the Diversity Committee. I am honored to have even a small part in presenting her with this richly deserved award.”

Benson is the first African-American woman to become a member of MPEG and had an Emmy nomination for her work on “Eyes on the Prize” in 1991.  Additional credits include “The American Experience”, “Maya Angelou and Still I Rise” and “Passengers.”  She is currently editing “Chicago Med.”

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The 67th Annual ACE Eddie Award Winners Announced

2017-01-28 10:12:48 mimirossi

The American Cinema Editors held their 67th Annual ACE Eddie Awards January 27, 2017. The gala affair took place in the International Ballroom of the Beverly Hilton Hotel. The ceremonies were presided over by ACE President, Stephen Rivkin.

Additional honors bestowed at the awards show went to J.J. Abrams for ACE Filmmaker of the Year; Thelma Schoonmaker, ACE and Janet Ashikaga, ACE, for the Career Achievement Award; Lori Colman, ACE, Diana Friedberg, ACE and William Gordean, were honored with the Heritage Award.

The ACE Eddie Awards went to:

Joe Walker, ACE

La La Land
Tom Cross, ACE

Fabienne Rawley & Jeremy Milton

O.J.: Made in America
Bret Granato, Maya Mumma & Ben Sozanski

Everything is Copy – Nora Ephron: Scripted & Unscripted
Bob Eisenhardt, ACE
Veep: “Morning After”
Steven Rasch, ACE

This is Us: “Pilot”
David L. Bertman, ACE

Game of Thrones: “Battle of the Bastards”
Tim Porter, ACE

All the Way
Carol Littleton, ACE

Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown: “Senegal”
Mustafa Bhagat

For more information about the American Cinema Editors, visit here.

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Filmworkers, Nashville, Edits and Posts “Garth Brooks: Yankee Stadium Live” in 4K

2017-01-24 15:40:03 artisanspr

Nashville— Filmworkers, Nashville, provided editorial and post-production finishing services for Garth Brooks: Yankee Stadium Live, a 2-hour concert special that recently debuted on AT&T’s Audience Network. Produced and directed by Jon Small, the special was captured, finished and broadcast in 4K and documents the superstar musician’s two sold out shows from last summer, the first ever concerts for a country artist at Yankee Stadium, and Brooks’ first appearance in New York City in 19 years. Filmworkers’ Adam Little edited the show; Colorist Jimmy Cadenas applied the final color grade.

Both live shows were recorded by some two dozen camera operators positioned around the stadium and working with Sony 4K camera systems. Additionally, a helicopter crew captured spectacular images of the stadium and the crowds from overhead. A special stage was constructed for the performers measuring 400 feet wide, 80 feet deep and 70 feet high, and backed by a mammoth projection screen.


Director Jon Small notes that crew spent eight days setting up for the event and that particular care was taken in positioning cameras to minimize obstructing the view of the live audience. “No one is closer to his fans than Garth,” Small says, “and he wants to be sure that everyone can see the show and can have a good time.”

Editorial and post production were similarly huge undertakings. The more than 100 hours of raw 4K camera media occupied nearly 80TB of central storage at Filmworkers’ Nashville facility. Engineers set up a pipeline that gave editorial and post operations equal access to source media, and allowed editorial conforming and final color grading to be conducted in 4K in real-time.

Little has edited numerous music-oriented projects for Small dating back nearly 20 years, including the 2007 Garth Brooks concert special, Garth Brooks: One Artist, One City, One Time. Over that time, they have developed a close rapport. “Adam knows what I’m looking for and so there’s a comfort factor between us; we can read each other’s minds,” Small says. “I give him a lot of latitude to cut each song the way he feels is right.”

Little began the editorial process by reviewing the full 100 hours of source media and pulling selects. “I look at every camera individually rather than watching a bank of cameras simultaneously to make sure I have every magic moment,” he explains. “I pay special attention to Garth’s close-ups and facial expressions, though with Garth performing and Jon directing, so many angles are great.”

“I strive to capture the energy of the show,” Little adds. “I treat the edit as another instrument to complement the music. I want you, the viewer, to feel each moment as if you are there.”

Capturing the essence of the live performance was aided by the structure of the show. It includes Brooks’ full 2-hour show (with two encores) and was designed to air commercial free, without interruption.  “We used the whole show,” says Little. “Because it was airing on the AT&T Network and we didn’t need to insert breaks, the television audience was able to experience the show in its entirety.  That was wonderful.”

Cadenas applied the final polish to the show in Filmworkers’ DI grading theater, using a Baselight 2 system. Working under Small’s direction, he focused on established rock solid consistency between the many camera sources and drawing out the mood and intensity of the live event.

“I wanted it to look the way that I saw it live—the colors, rich; the blacks, really black,” says Small. “No show looks quite like this. It is as colorful as it can be from the stage to the projection screen to the lighting. It’s just amazing.”

Cadenas focused a lot of attention the crowd. “We wanted to bring out as much detail as we could from crowd shots while preserving some of the darkness, which is important to the ambience of the show,” he explains. We also wanted to be sure that Yankee Stadium looked good. Matching levels between the various cameras and getting the crowds right was intricate work.”

Although the project marked Filmworkers, Nashville’s first long-form 4K project, the finishing process proceeded without a hitch. “We were able to do the cut, final color correction and deliverables as easily as if it were a standard project,” Cadenas said. “There is a big demand for quality 4K material and we are ready to meet it. We’re far ahead of the curve.”

Filmworkers Nashville is located at 1006 17th Avenue South, Nashville, Tennessee 37212. For more information, call 615.322.9337 or visit

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Editor Hughes Winborne Talks Getting the Rhythm Right on “Fences”

2017-01-20 08:00:55 ccwire-staff

Hughes Winborne, ACE, is an Oscar-winning editor (Crash, 2005) who has cut more than two dozen feature films including Billy Bob Thornton’s Sling Blade, The Pursuit of Happyness, Seven Pounds, and Guardians of the Galaxy. His latest film is Denzel Washington’s adaptation of August Wilson’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Fences.

HULLFISH: Hughes, we have something in common. I have just been cutting a film with Mykelti Williamson in it and he’s in Fences, too.

HULLFISH:  I agree.WINBORNE: Mykelti’s great.  His performance in Fences is so endearing. He is reprising his role in the play on Broadway. The play is amazing. The film, as far as the dialogue is concerned does not stray from the play as it as presented on Broadway. Like the play, the movie is all about the words, and so the editing has to be fairly precise and discreet. It’s a tricky thing.  A lot of people don’t appreciate the challenge of putting together a film so driven by dialogue.

WINBORNE:  The first half of Fences is primarily dialogue. The Help was of the same ilk. Two hours and eighteen minutes of talking. Keeping an audience’s interest for that long is challenging.  It requires making sure that the dramatic tension sustains so the audience will climb on and stay for the ride.

With Fences it’s a matter of getting the rhythm right because the rhythm is very precise. You get caught up in this rhythm. This may seem weird but it’s a bit like listening to a great song.  It doesn’t really matter if you miss some of the lyrics. If you’re getting the rhythm and the tone, you’re probably feeling emotionally what you need to understand the film.

Read the full interview at ProVideo Coalition.

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'Arrival,' 'La La Land,' 'Moonlight' Among American Cinema Editors' Eddie Award Nominees

2017-01-03 17:43:39 ccwire-staff

American Cinema Editors has revealed the nominees for its 67th annual ACE Eddie Awards, which will be handed out Jan. 27 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.Narrative live-action features are divided into two categories. Nominees for a dramatic feature are the editors of Arrival, Hacksaw Ridge, Hell or High Water, Manchester by the Sea and Moonlight. In the comedy feature category, ACE has nominated the editors of Deadpool, Hail Caesar, La La Land, The Jungle Bookand The Lobster.The field includes first-time nominees such as Moonlight‘s Nat Sanders and Joi McMillon, and past nominees such as Arrival‘s Joe Walker, The Jungle Book‘s Mark Livolsi and La La Land‘s Tom Cross (an Academy Award winner for Whiplash).In 11 of the last 15 years, the winner of the award for dramatic feature has gone on to win the Academy Award in film editing. In 2003, the Oscar for film editing was awarded to the musical Chicago, which won the Eddie that year for the category then-known as best edited feature, comedy or musical. Last year, Margaret Sixel won the dramatic feature Eddie and Oscar for Mad Max: Fury Road.

This year’s Eddie nominees also include Laika’s Kubo and the Two Strings, and Disney’s Moana and Zootopia in the animated feature category. Moana editor Jeff Draheim previously won an Eddie in 2014 for Frozen.

The five nominated feature documentaries are 13th, Amanda Knox, The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – the Touring Years, OJ: Made in America and Weiner.

Scoring multiple nominations in the television categories were Better Call Saul, which earned three nods; and Stranger ThingsVeep and Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, which received two nominations apiece.

The complete list of nominees follows.


Arrival – Joe Walker, ACE

Hacksaw Ridge – John Gilbert, ACE

Hell or High Water – Jake Roberts

Manchester by the Sea – Jennifer Lame

Moonlight – Nat Sanders, Joi McMillon


Deadpool – Julian Clarke, ACE

Hail, Caesar! – Roderick Jaynes

The Jungle Book – Mark Livolsi, ACE

La La Land – Tom Cross, ACE

The Lobster – Yorgos Mavropsaridis


Kubo and the Two Strings – Christopher Murrie, ACE

Moana – Jeff Draheim, ACE

Zootopia – Fabienne Rawley & Jeremy Milton


13th – Spencer Averick

Amanda Knox – Matthew Hamachek

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – the Touring Years – Paul Crowder

O.J.: Made in America – Bret Granato, Maya Mumma & Ben Sozanski

Weiner – Eli B. Despres


The Choice 2016 – Steve Audette, ACE

Everything Is Copy – Bob Eisenhart, ACE

We Will Rise: Michelle Obama’s Mission to Educate Girls Around the World – Oliver Lief


Silicon Valley: “The Uptick” – Brian Merken, ACE

Veep: “Morning After” – Steven Rasch, ACE

Veep: “Mother” – Shawn Paper


Better Call Saul: “Fifi” – Skip Macdonald, ACE

Better Call Saul: “Klick” – Skip Macdonald, ACE & Curtis Thurber

Better Call Saul: “Nailed” – Kelley Dixon, ACE & Chris McCaleb

Mr. Robot: “eps2.4m4ster-s1ave.aes” – Philip Harrison

This Is Us: “Pilot” – David L. Bertman, ACE


The Crown: “Assassins” – Yan Miles, ACE

Game of Thrones: “Battle of the Bastards” – Tim Porter, ACE

Stranger Things: “Chapter One: The Vanishing of Will Byers” – Dean Zimmerman

Stranger Things: “Chapter Seven: The Bathtub” – Kevin D. Ross

Westworld: “The Original” – Stephen Semel, ACE & Marc Jozefowicz


All the Way – Carol Littleton, ACE

The Night Of: “The Beach” – Jay Cassidy, ACE

The People V. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story “Marcia, Marcia, Marcia” – Adam Penn, Stewart Schill, ACE & C. Chi-yoon Chung


Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown: “Manila” – Hunter Gross, ACE

Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown: “Senegal” – Mustafa Bhagat

Deadliest Catch: “Fire at Sea: Part 2” – Josh Earl, ACE & Alexander Rubinow, ACE

Source: Carolyn Giardina, THR

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Cutting "Hacksaw Ridge"

2016-12-02 15:26:15 ccwire-staff
John Gilbert, ACE

John Gilbert, ACE

Summit Entertainment released Hacksaw Ridge, a new action drama set during World War II. Directed by Mel Gibson, the feature tells the true story of Desmond Doss (played by Andrew Garfield), who chose to serve as an unarmed army medic on the frontlines in Okinawa. The story details how he was able to save the lives of 75 men without ever firing a weapon. The film also stars Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer, Hugo Weaving, Rachel Griffiths and Vince Vaughn.

John Gilbert, ACE (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring), edited the film, which was actually shot in Australia. Here, he talks with Post about his year on the project, his Avid workflow, working with Mel Gibson, the director, and the thought that went into cutting the feature’s brutal battle sequences.
Read the full interview here.
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Hula Post Supports OWN’s “Queen Sugar”

2016-11-21 15:49:04 artisanspr


HOLLYWOOD—Queen Sugar¸ the new OWN series from Warner Horizon Television and Harpo Productions and executive producers Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay, tells the story of three estranged siblings who, after a family tragedy, reunite to run an 800-acre sugar farm in Louisiana. Based on the best-seller by Natalie Baszile, the show is a rich and deeply moving tale of people overcoming risk and reinventing themselves.


The series’ editorial team was led Spencer Averick, whose many collaborations with DuVernay date back to the 2008 documentary This Is the Life and also include 2015 Academy Award Best Picture nominee Selma. Also returning from the Selma team was Hula Post, which again supplied editorial systems and support. Additionally, for Queen Sugar, Hula provided office space in Burbank for the series’ writers.

For Averick, whose team spent several months cutting the first season, Queen Sugar was unlike a typical television drama, describing it instead as “a feature film told in 13 parts.” “It’s not like regular television in the pacing and slow character development,” Averick says. “It’s the same kind of story that Ava and I have been telling in narrative features for years. It was different in that we had to hit the 42 minute marks, but we still had the freedom to take our time with the characters.”

Averick says that the nature of the story required a restrained editorial pace. He often allowed scenes to play out with a minimum of cuts. As an example, he points to an emotionally charged moment near the end of the show’s first episode. Ralph Bordelon (Kofi Siriboe) takes his son Blue (Ethan Hutchison) to visit his father (Glynn Turman), the family’s patriarch, who is dying in a hospital.


“Ralph has been delaying bringing his son into the hospital because, he says, he doesn’t want him to see his grandfather on his death bed with tubes coming out of his nose,” Averick explains. “But the subtext is clear, it’s Ralph who is afraid.”

“When they walk in, Ernest wakes up and they share a sweet moment. There is no dialogue and I sat on the shots for a long time, for as long as it felt right. A lot was going on in their eyes. You could feel their relationship and history. It was a positive moment for three generations of men. There were no words, but it spoke volumes.”

Averick’s team included editors Avril Beukes, JoAnne Yarrow and Paul Alderman, and assistant editors Yasmin Assemi, Sarah Russell and Andrew Hellesen. Associate Producer Christiana Hooks supervised post production with Post Supervisor Ryan Stephens, Post Coordinator Olivia Latz and Post Production Assistant Kenny Christie.  Hula Post provided six Avid Media Composers, ISIS shared storage and 24/7 technical support.


“Hula was quick, accommodating and collaborative,” says Hooks. “It was smooth sailing. On the few occasions when there was a technical issue, they were there in 30 minutes.”

Hooks adds that the entire post production process proceeded without a hitch and in a spirit of collaboration set in motion by DuVernay. “We became a community,” she says. “Ava included all of us and allowed everyone the freedom to give notes and speak their minds. Ultimately, that made everything better. It had more eyes on it and more points of view and that was a huge benefit to the show.”

Averick agrees and says that the result is a unique and powerful series that he believes will grow on audiences. “It’s not instant gratification,” he says. “We allow you to sink your teeth into the story and the characters. It has a cumulative effect. It’s what we do…and we love it.”

About Hula Post

Hula Post provides exceptional equipment rental services to the post production and broadcast communities. With offices in Burbank and West Los Angeles, the company is the industry leader in customized workflow solutions. It offers a large inventory of editorial and finishing systems, storage solutions, and support gear, backed by the industry’s most experienced and knowledgeable support team in the industry.

For more information, visit

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Editor Patrick Colman Discusses “Other People”

2016-09-15 23:37:48 mgalas

Despite spending nearly ten years as a commercial and music video editor, Patrick Colman never worked with director Spike Jonze. It was during a transitional stage, when Colman worked as a cutting assistant on Jonze’s short, “Scenes from the Suburbs”, the two crossed paths, and Jonze gave full endorsement to the emerging narrative editor.  The praise created a domino effect that has ushered Colman forward in his career.  After providing some additional editing to Michael Gondry’s “The We and the I”, Colman got his first break as a feature editor on David Cross’ directorial debut, “Hits.”  Familiar with “Hits”, the producers of “Other People” sent Colman their script with hopes he’d edit the film

“I read it over the fourth of July and said ‘Yes Please!’ If they’ll have me, let’s go!” said Colman.

A six time Emmy nominee for his writing contributions to “Saturday Night Live”, Kelly was about to embark on his feature directing debut. He wrote the script for “Other People” based on his personal experiences surrounding the final stages of his mother’s battle with cancer.  A week before production began, Colman spoke with Kelly about the editing job.  While the two discussed the story, Kelly did not present a specific direction or style for the editor to work in.  He left the rough cut capably in Colman’s hands.

Two weeks later, Colman hit the ground running. He worked for roughly twenty days autonomously, cutting the scenes from each evening’s dailies. Eager to keep the momentum moving, Kelly joined Colman in the edit suite directly upon wrapping production.  The two men watched the sections and began exchanging ideas.  Colman, who was making his debut in editing auto-biographical material, was inspired by Kelly’s composure.

“It had to be surreal, standing on a set for twenty days shooting a movie of your own life,” said Colman. “It was something I was constantly aware of, but it was never a point of contention.”

Instead, Kelly, the “Other People” producers and Colman found themselves all on the same page through the broad strokes of the first assembly. Sitting with Kelly, Colman quickly fell in perfect harmony with Kelly’s emotional connections to the story, a point that would help with refining the pacing of the scenes. Simultaneously, he focused on remaining impartial to the journey of the characters, allowing him to approach the story much like a viewer seeing it for the first time.  This sensibility allowed him to keep “all the balls are in the air” between the various family and personal dynamics that must unfold organically for the story to have impact.

What proved most challenging during the final editing process was tightening the excellent performances from stars including Molly Shannon, Jesse Plemons and Bradley Whitford, to name a few. Colman knew the rough cuts played long and needed to be trimmed to maintain momentum.  Colman and Kelly took time with key scenes between characters to find the emotional sweet spots and perfect pacing that would fall properly into the film’s run time.

“We were stuck with a wealth of material from these great perfomances. It was a harsh reality; this needs to play and have momentum,” said Colman.

Like most editors, Colman describes his editing process as “feeling” and “maintaining” drama and comedy. One particular device he can point to, however, is his use of David (Jesse Plemons) as the entry of the audience into the journey of “Other People.”  During deep emotional beats – for instance when Joanne (Molly Shannon) is the on stage guest at David’s improv troupe or when skyping during a family friend’s wedding – Colman would include a shot of David to get his point of view on the situation.

In between attending screenings of “Other People”, Colman is currently back in the editor’s seat, working on some commercials as well as a project for the National Football League.

“As an editor, it’s nice to be able to go from the micro story of a commercial to the macro of a feature. I’m very lucky,” said Colman.

Source: Variety411

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Piecing Together the “Deadliest Catch”

2016-06-09 21:02:06 mgalas

Working on “Deadliest Catch” has been a dream for editor Josh Earl. After joining the series as an assistant editor at the end of season one, he was soon promoted to editor and cutting his own episodes by season three.  Now, twelve seasons into “Deadliest Catch”, Earl remains committed to the stories behind the crabber’s icy escapades.  His seven Emmy nominations and five consecutive wins have fueled his desire to constantly elevate his work on the show.

“I never thought any of this would happen,” said Earl. “The Emmy wins help drive that push to lift the bar higher.”

Production for “Deadliest Catch” typically begins in December and runs through July. Throughout that period, footage is delivered from cameras running 24 hours daily on seven boats, with additional coverage coming from aerial and underwater units, as well as surveillance footage – some of which is provided by the Coast Guard. Earl and his team easily receive over 30,000 hours of footage from this diverse variety of sources to sift through per a season.

The show’s producers and story producers set the shooting schedule dates months in advance of air dates. This allows them to observe developing story lines as they unfold, mindful of the “Deadliest Catch” documentary-style editing.  There are also associate producers who are each assigned a specific boat, allowing for mindful observation over every thread coming in.  Despite conferring on these general outlines with the editing team, all delivered footage is logged for easy reference.  Earl has a team mining these records for sequences that relate to events that took place in past episodes and seasons, or moments that will pique a viewer’s attention.  The assistance of the team allows Earl and his fellow lead editors nurture each developing story line with focused eyes.  The editors meet with story editors as threads are coming together to create cohesive arcs that are explored throughout the season’s 18 episodes.

Earl credits the adventurous nature and dedication of the crew as the backbone of “The Deadliest Catch.” To assist the camera team– many of whom are also seasoned vets of the show – Earl began making set visits during the ninth season.  This allowed him to speak directly with the crew and camera department and illustrate how he edits their footage.   The visit also gave Earl the chance to experience the environment from a different perspective; one that continues to inform his editing decisions.

“It was awesome to be there. It was so beautiful, but also so gritty and raw,” said Earl.

Earl loves being an “old timer” on the set of “Deadliest Catch” and has no plans to depart the show anytime soon. While his editing background was built in the reality genre, he has had some opportunities to dabble in narrative fare, including working on a few “The Walking Dead” webisodes.  Having fully enjoyed the experience, he hopes there will be more opportunities to engage in these avenues further down the line.

“You use a different muscle group, but there is a place in my heart for all genres,” said Earl.

Source: Variety411

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Editors Alan Baumgarten and Jay Cassidy Bring us "Joy"

2015-12-17 11:09:57 mgalas

Editing isn’t always a one person task.  Last year’s Oscar nominated “American Hustle,” under the direction of David O. Russell, was cut by the hands of three gifted editors:  Alan Baumgarten, Jay Cassidy and Crispin Struthers – a team that earned their own Oscar nomination for Best Editing (and an American Cinema Editors win for Best Edited Feature – Comedy or Musical).  O. Russell’s latest feature, “Joy”, upped the editor quotient, presenting a team of four editors:  Baumgarten, Cassidy, Tom Cross and Christopher Tellefsen.

Baumgarten and Cassidy were the first to be contacted by O. Russell to edit “Joy” – a film loosely based on the life of Joy Mangano; the inventor behind products including the “Miracle Mop” and “Forever Fragrant.”   Both men were tied to other obligations when the project commenced, so they presented O. Russell and his producers with some alternatives.  The “Joy” team settled on two editors who, as it turned out, could only provide a limited commitment:  Cross, who succeeded Baumgarten and Cassidy to nab last year’s Best Editing Oscar for his work on “Whiplash” and Tellefsen, whose last foray on an O. Russell picture came in 1996 with “Flirting with Disaster.”

“Tom Cross (worked on the beginning) of the movie, then Chris Tellefsen was there for a time in the middle,” said Baumgarten.  “Both of them had other films to move on to so it was the case where they would be on for a certain amount of time, then once Jay and I came on, we would stay on to the end.”

Despite their inability to start cutting the film from the beginning, they were privy to early communications with O. Russell about his vision of the story.  Presenting the growth of a woman who becomes empowered despite the stagnant environment that’s permeated three generations before her was a concept the director worked through during his discussions of the script with his department heads.   Within those conversations, Baumgarten and Cassidy were able to clarify the director’s conception behind the film.

“Alan and I were involved in the script phase, working through it as it evolved,” said Cassidy.   Added Baumgarten, “He would talk through it and describe sections or scenes repeatedly.  And the more we heard him describe it, we could figure out what he wanted to come through from those characters or those moments.”

The script development phase helped flesh out the need for some additional presences in Joy’s (played by Jennifer Lawrence) life. Cassidy recalls the “family grew from within” during this period; Joy’s step sister was fleshed out along with the grandmother.  This development phase also brought to life the idea of Joy’s ability to “step into” soap operas – a device that acted as Joy’s alter-ego, allowing her to feel empowered and move forward with her goals.  During their departure from the project, Baumgarten and Cassidy established an open rapport with Cross and Tellefsen, communicating on progress and sharing ideas.  Once Baumgarten and Cassidy rejoined the production, they chose to break up sections.

“Generally with David’s films we try to stay within our sections,” said Baumgarten.  “We’ll meet at some point and our material will lead into each other.  With David’s material there are buried gems that you might like to call back at a later date, so there is a value in emerging yourself in material and staying there.  But then we all share screenings and footage and talk about general ideas and give input as well.”

Added Cassidy, “That’s the best. Whenever you are in the kind of multiple situation I always say it makes for better cuts because you get other eyes and thoughts and reviews, not just from David but from other editors.”

On this four-generational character study, Baumgarten and Cassidy found themselves gravitating to those pure emotional moments as the building blocks of the film’s storytelling structure.  They avoid cutting a scene to emphasize a joke or particular emotion, instead finding the beats that are the most believable and allowing the emotion or the humor to flow organically from the situation. The editors credit a strong cast, including Lawrence, Robert DeNiro and Bradley Cooper, making this task an “embarrassment of riches.”

Once the film was nearly completed, Baumgarten and Cassidy reviewed the original footage to ensure there were no important moments, reactions or business that had been overlooked during the initial editing phase.  Cassidy recalls first utilizing this approach on “Silver Linings Playbook” and finding omissions that, had they not been added in those last passes, would have greatly affected the film’s impact.  The story reveals itself through the months of editing and returning to the original material at a point when the film has taken shape allows the editors to find clips: sometimes as short as an actor’s glance or piece of dialogue, that can greatly enhance the intention of the scene.

“It’s a rich process with David because he is open to those kinds of discoveries late in the game,” said Cassidy.  “You’ve edited for all these months, and now the movie is clearer than it was, when you go back and reexamine, you see moments in the original material in a different way.”

To learn more about “Joy” please visit:

Source: Variety411

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PostFactoryNY Hosts Post-Production of Acclaimed Film “Spotlight,” In Theaters Now

2015-12-10 11:50:55 artisanspr

SIM GroupNEW YORK—Spotlight, director Tom McCarthy’s powerful, new drama, tells the true story of the Boston Globe’s investigation of child molestation by Catholic priests and the subsequent cover-up by the local archdiocese. The film, released by Open Road Films, was edited by Tom McArdle in his fifth collaboration with McCarthy, dating back to 2003 and The Station Agent, the director’s feature debut.

Directed by Tom McCarthy and co-written by Tom McCarthy and Josh Singer, Spotlight stars Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery, Stanley Tucci, Brian d’Arcy James, Billy Crudup.  Spotlight was produced by Michael Sugar, Steve Golin, Nicole Rocklin and Blye Pagon Faust.

McArdle and his crew spent 10 months cutting Spotlight at PostFactoryNY’s facility, with eight months devoted to picture editing, and two to sound, music and visual effects. The set up included editing and assist rooms along with offices for McCarthy and Post Supervisor Kelley Cribben. The main workstation was an Avid Media Composer v 6.5.4 on a 12-core Mac Pro with 16 gigs of RAM. The production stored 5 TB of media data on PostFactoryNY’s central ISIS server.

McArdle has cut each of McCarthy’s films at PostFactoryNY. “We are very comfortable there,” he says, “and that high level of comfort allows us to focus on the work.  It’s the best place in New York for editing movies; everyone wants to cut there.  A lot of talented people were working on our floor—Paul Haggis, David Simon, Brian Koppelman, et al.  PostFactoryNY has big rooms and a nice atmosphere.  Their Avids and tech support are top-notch.  It feels like a big rustic house for moviemaking.”

Stylistically, Spotlight has a similar feel to the tough, realistic dramas of the ‘70s, but more tightly wound. “The fact that it was based on real events and a real investigation influenced things,” McArdle says.  “It gave it a gradual build.  During the months of editing, we tried to make the film tighter so that there were no unnecessary moments.”

McCarthy likewise describes an editing process that was focused and deliberate. “It was all about pace and clarity in hopes of maintaining the tension and tone of the picture,” he recalls. “I usually take a few weeks off after the shoot and then Tom and I sit down and watch his first assembly. Then we go out for a steak and a few martinis, and wash it off. We get to work the next morning and keep editing until we think it’s ready. We do a number of small screenings along the way to push the cut forward.”

The film includes several montage scenes used to convey the scope of the newspaper’s investigation. McCarthy says they were among the most difficult sequences to cut. “The process is very tedious, going through directories and knocking on doors, that sort of thing,” he explains. “It took a while to get the pace right. We wanted to feel both the drive of the investigation and the tedium of the work. It was a fine line to walk.”

Spotlight has drawn rave reviews from critics who have compared its portrayal of investigative journalism to such classics as All the President’s Men. Time Magazine and Entertainment Weekly each placed it atop its list of Best Movies of 2015. It was named Film of the Year by the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, the Boston Society of Film Critics, the Washington, D.C. Film Critics Association, and the New York Film Critics Online (it also won awards for screenplay and ensemble cast.) It has been honored at Chicago International Film Festival (Audience Choice Award), Gotham Awards (Best Feature, Best Screenplay), Hollywood Film Awards (Screenwriter of the Year), Independent Spirit Awards (Robert Altman Award) Mill Valley Film Festival (Audience Award: Best U.S. Feature Film), National Board of Review (Top Ten Films), New York Film Critics Circle Awards (Best Actor) and the Venice Film Festival (Brian Award, Silver Mouse).


McCarthy says that PostFactoryNY provides an ideal environment for serious filmmakers to do great work. “It feels like home,” he insists. “It’s a unique place. They take very good care of you, big or small film, and they are good people.  They take film seriously and you feel that in their approach and support. Alex Halpern sets the tone for a staff that is consistently top notch.  And they were very kind to my dog—and she’s demanding.”

About SIM Group:

Backed by Toronto-based investment firm Granite Partners, the SIM Group is a leading supplier of production equipment, workflow and post-production solutions, with offices across the US, Canada and China. Our diverse services can be utilized on any production at any stage. In Canada, our offices in Toronto and Vancouver service grip and lighting from PS Production Services and can be complemented with SIM Digital cinematography and playback equipment for any production’s needs.  Bling, Chainsaw, Pixel Underground, Tattersall Sound and Picture and PostFactoryNY provide an array of services from dailies, to online and offline editing, to final color/DI and visual effects, to sound editorial and mixing. Bling’s services, which include a comprehensive workflow solution, are offered at all offices across the US and Canada, as well as off-site service through POD (Post on Demand).  Chainsaw’s full-service facility in Hollywood provides creative editorial and extensive finishing services with some of the top colorists in the industry. Rounding out the family of companies are Pixel Underground, a Toronto-based post-production company, and its associated service, StationEX, which provides physical and file-based media fulfillment and encoding/distribution services, Tattersall Sound and Picture, a provider of sound editorial and mixing for motion pictures and television and Post Factory NY, one of the East Coast’s top independent post-production facilities. For more information, visit

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Hula Post Production Provides Editing Facilities for Thrilling Drama “Captive”

2015-10-07 08:26:48 artisanspr


HOLLYWOOD—Hula Post recently provided editorial systems, facilities and support to editor Melissa Kent for her work on Captive, Paramount Pictures’ new thrilling drama. Kent spent six months cutting the film at Hula’s Burbank facility, followed by an additional two weeks on Paramount Pictures lot in Hollywood. Hula provided Avid workstations and storage at both sites.

Directed by Jerry Jameson (Last Flight Out) and starring David Oyelowo (Selma) and Kate Mara (House of Cards), Captive centers on Brian Nichols who captured national attention in 2005 when he broke out of a Georgia courthouse after killing a judge and three other people. He subsequently took Ashley Smith, a single mother, hostage and held her for several hours before surrendering to authorities.

The movie tells the story with gripping realism. The first minutes of the film, when Nichols makes his escape, features intense action with almost no dialogue. Much of the balance of the film occurs in Smith’s small apartment where the ratcheting anxiety is heightened by the flowing camerawork of cinematographer Luis David Sansans.

Kent enhances the dramatic tension with an editorial approach that is deliberate, but understated. “My job is to be responsive to the actors, and David Oyelowo and Kate Mara are amazing,” she observes. “Although playing a killer, David brought a deep humanity to Brian Nichols, and Kate was wonderfully subtle and expressive.”

“The film is very dynamic in the way it was shot; the camerawork is completely hand-held and constantly in motion,” Kent adds. “Once Brian takes Ashley hostage in her apartment, the camerawork heightened the frenetic energy of Brian, and contrasted well with the stillness of Ashley.”

Kent notes that the support she received from Hula Post freed her from technology concerns and allowed her to focus on storytelling. “Hula bends over backwards to make the environment very pleasant and conducive to creativity,” she says.
Kent, who reviewed historical records including the 9-1-1 call from the incident as part of her preparation, notes that the real-life events were always on her mind. “It’s an intense story and makes for an exciting, compelling movie,” she says, “and is all the more powerful and tragic because it is true.”

About Hula Post Production
For nearly 20 years, Hula Post has provided exceptional equipment rental services to the post production and broadcast communities. With offices in Burbank and West Los Angeles, we are the industry leader in customized workflow solutions. We offer a large inventory of editorial and finishing systems, storage solutions, and support gear, and we back it up with the most experienced and knowledgeable support team in the industry. Whether you need a single system or a complex, customized workflow to take you from production through post, we can provide you with the tools to meet your technical requirements, budget and production schedule.
For more information, visit

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Editor Stacey Schroeder On The Emmy Nominated Pilot For “The Last Man On Earth”

2015-08-20 22:08:09 mgalas

Calling herself “editor” is still something Stacey Schroeder is savoring. After years of paying her dues in the edit suite working as an assistant or first assistant editor, Schroeder graduated to helming the department on series including “Eastbound and Down”, “You’re the Worst” and “Garfunkel and Oates.” Thanks to her outstanding contributions on the 2015 Breakout comedy “The Last Man on Earth,” Schroeder must now get used to placing “Emmy0nominated” in front of her editor title.

“The series was a delight to work on. I never expected anything like this,” said Schroeder.

Schroeder became aware of the project through a producer on “You’re the worst.” While she was aware of the work done by Will Forte, the creator of “The Last Man on Earth”, and the show’s executive producers Phil Lord and Chris Miller, she didn’t know what to expect of their concept. After reading the pilot script, she was extremely enthusiastic about the material. She met with Lord and Miller at Fox on a Friday afternoon to discuss that possibility. That evening, she had a message informing her she had the job.

Working in conjunction with editor Daniel Haworth, Schroeder was in charge of editing all the odd number episodes, including her Emmy nominated pilot, “Alive in Tucson.” In this episode, viewers are introduced to a not-so-distant future where the Earth’s population has been decimated by a deadly virus. Forte’s character, Phil Miller )a name pranking on the show’s executive producers_ travels across the US, looking for any survivors and collecting memorabilia from national landmarks along his route. Convinced he is the last man on Earth, he settles in Arizona after leaving desperate messages on nearby billboards declaring “Alive in Tucson.” Schroeder’s biggest editing challenge in this episode was to find ways to make the solo character relatable and engaging to viewers. As the series progresses, the character makes some dark choices. Establishing likability early on was crucial.

“We were very careful about revealing his face. We wanted to get the audience excited to meet him, so in the cutting room we agreed to wait for the reveal,” said Schroeder.

Any scenes early on that introduced Phil appear as long shots or carefully chosen side views. Once Phil is fully revealed, an enormous, two year plus growth of unruly beard conceals his face. Schroeder had to watch for physical moments and small gestures that could help convey emotions the character was experiencing.

“I was affected by the beard.  I’d look closely at his eyes and watch for little movements,” said Schroeder.

As new characters began entering Phil’s life, ensuring a balance between comedy, likability and the dark emotions continued to provide challenges in the edit suite. His newfound freedom as the world’s last man tapped into feelings of entitlement and authority he hadn’t previously experienced. Each new entry into his Tucson home chips away at this power. Strict attention to pacing became crucial to balance the harsh reactions and the humor in his pureness of his humanity to ensure he remained likable. Schroeder relied upon her experiences editing the improv heavy “Eastbound and Down” to discover the perfect moments to capture the small moment the secured this balance.

“The Last Man on Earth” was Schroeder’s first network experience. Recognizing there are not many shows like “Last Man” on network television, she applauds Fox for having the believe viewers would embrace the weird choices Forte and the crew were making. Despite his presence in virtually every scene, Forte always made time to visit the edit suite and spend hours reviewing footage and providing notes. She was thrilled to learn the show was embraced and renewed for a second season. While she’s happy for everyone involved, she had an opportunity to fulfill her personal goal of editing a motion picture, and will not be returning for season two.

“It certainly was sad, I see them all as dear friends,” said Schroeder. “I had been really interested in getting involved with features, and the opportunity came up. I’m working on a (yet unannounced feature) with Universal. It’s bittersweet.”

Source: Marjorie Galas, Variety411

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Music Hits Emotional Beats: An Interview With Editor Joe Leonard

2015-06-18 23:57:41 mgalas

“Empire” was the first job editor Joe Leonard took after his daughter’s birth. His new family experience fueled his power to fully tap into the intense emotional beats and complex dynamics between members of the Lyon family, from the tenderness between Cookie (Taraji P. Henson) and Jamal (Jussie Smollett), to the powerful devastation that arises from patriarch Luscious’ (Terrence Howard) actions.

“The scenes in the pilot affected me the most. They were emotional, intense and powerful,” said Leonard. “I knew as I was cutting I’d share this episode with my daughter someday, and I immediately understood how powerful that was.”

Leonard had been a longtime fan of “Empire” co-creator Lee Daniels work, and was thrilled when his agent called him suggesting he read the pilot’s script. He’d just finished a horror film and fell in love with the complexity the story presented. Having worked on “Glee” from its onset, Leonard was familiar with editing storylines that were powered by son lyrics. After a 45 minute meeting with Daniels, the two men hit it off and Leonard was hired for the job.

Sitting with Daniels in the editing room, Leonard quickly discovered those moments that the creator gravitated to. As the season moved on, Leonard would review the footage and select the moment with the strongest emotional beats.

“He is passionate about truthfulness in the storytelling,” said Leonard. “All the characters are based on family or friends. He is really keyed in to the performances and the truth of the acting. There cannot be a single inauthentic moment.”

After reviewing the footage and finding the most authentic moments, Leonard plays close attention to the music. Set in the world of a hip hop dynasty, R&B and hip hop as well as the dramatic score supplied by composer Fils Eisler is important to the editing style.

“This isn’t a musical per say. The characters don’t begin to sing in a dreamlike way,” said Leonard. “The performances are telling a story that isn’t shown in a dialogue scene. The songs become an engine for the story as well.”

Leonard will use a musical number to energize the scenes around it through his ability to separate the music into individual stems. He can then match the rhythm of these stems to specific characters, enhancing the emotional impact the character has on a scene. An example of this would be the introduction of Cookie in the pilot who literally enters the scene “marching to the beat of her own drummer.” Leonard used the musical stem of a hip hop backbeat and matched it with the tone and entrance of Cookie into the scene.

“Cookie is walking in and turning the room over,” said Leonard. “I used the stem as a scoring device, matching with the dramatic storytelling. It became a really interesting, fun way to find storylines.”

Stems are also used to emphasize emotions or connect storylines during flashback sequences in “Empire.” In an episode written by Danny Strong, closeted gay son Jamal comes out by performing “You’re So Beautiful” during a massive party. A flashback of young Jamal being tossed into a trashcan by Luscious occurs; this flashback was first introduced in the pilot during a song entitled “Good Enough.” Leonard ran stems from “Good Enough” through the flashback scene, coupled with stems from “You’re So Beautiful”, then restarted “You’re So Beautiful” after the flashback concluded to emphasize the power Jamal had in finally overcoming the fear-based tyranny of his father.

Leonard learned how to use music as a character to keep scenes invigorated while working on “Glee.” It requires a sound editing skill set in addition to the editorial role. While a series such as “Empire” – set in the music industry – has an organic use for music and the stems Leonard finds, his primary concern is bringing an audiences’ attention to the performances, energy and emotion of a scene. His style of editing is always based on what feels right during any given moment.

Leonard has written and directed a number of films and considers himself a filmmaker who continues to write and develop his own projects. Above all else, his passion is in editing. The opportunity of working with people including Lee Daniels, Danny Strong and John Singleton on “Empire” has been a formative experience for the editor.

“I’ve learned a lot from this show. I’ve learned from Lee’s desire to be authentic and truthful,” said Leonard. “I’ve always been careful, but now I try to see more like Lee.”

As “Empire” became increasingly popular, Leonard often watched the show amongst crowds that would throw “Empire” parties at bars. He enjoyed seeing people stand, cheering and embracing the emotional highs and lows the characters experienced. It’s the second time the editor has seen a project he worked on become a cultural phenomenon, and he’s extremely pleased the material has been embraced.

“I’m the luckiest editor in the universe,” said Leonard. “I just happened to be at the right place at the right time from the beginning of both shows.”

Source: Variety 411

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Film & Television Editors' Learn Techniques For Career Advancement At The Editors' Lounge

2015-06-03 19:49:57 jleibovitz

The Editors’ Lounge hosted their May event where production and post-production professionals were given the opportunity to get an up close look at the latest time-saving tools from RE: Vision Effects and Venera Technologies. Editor Brady Betzel also lead a discussion with an emphasis on how learning new toolsets can put film & television editors careers on the fast-track. Four lucky attendees walked away with raffle prizes from Venera Technologies and a complete set of plugins from RE: Vision Effects at the end of the evening.

Lori Freitag Content and Training Manager of RE: Vision Effects presented the making of “Woody & Tinder,” a PSA for The PSA tells a sad love story about a “wooden” couple in love that are not able to enjoy the Southern California Beaches due to trash and debris littering the once pristine shoreline. Freitag showed how RE: Vision Effects helped in the creation of the project and in overcoming common problems both production and post-production related. Four of the RE: Vision Effects plugins were utilized to enhance the project. RE: Match™ was used to automatically balance the tablet to the DSLR used for live action. DE: Flicker™ was used to smooth out the time lapse shot of the sunset and Twixtor® was used to re-time and re-map some of the shots allowing removal of an unwanted passerby in the background. The closing titles were flown in and ReelSmart Motion Blur® was used to add motion blur to the 3D animated text. “The unique advantage of presenting at the Editors’ Lounge is the intimate setting which allows candid discussion and sharing of ideas,” said Freitag. The folks are always interested to learn new techniques and tricks that sometimes aren’t obvious without face to face exchange.”

Fereidoon Khosravi, SVP Business Development-Americas, of Venera Technologies, discussed the company’s flagship file-based automated QC software, Pulsar, and provided details about the rich feature set of audio/video/container QC checks that Pulsar performs. Fereidoon also did a live demo of Pulsar, running through some sample files with artifacts and showing how Pulsar is able to identify the issues with the files. “I often have conversations about Pulsar with large organizations and broadcasters,” said Khosravi. “At the Editors’ Lounge, it was great to sit in a room with actual editors, colorists and video engineers and talk through Pulsar features and see their positive reaction and interest.” The most intriguing part of the discussion was about the very unique offering of the Pulsar PPU (Pay-Per-Use) edition, where there is no upfront cost and the users will only pay for whatever QC they use. It is a perfect option for those facilities with low volume of content or those with “project based” work where the QC need is intense for a short period of time, and then may slow down. Some of the attendees took advantage of the presentation time and signed up for Pulsar PPU accounts at the session. Khosravi comments “Attendees found our unique Pulsar PPU offer very interesting and it’s what’s needed for their environment, which was very encouraging for us to hear and a confirmation of our vision about Pulsar PPU.”

Editor Brady Betzel shared valuable advice and tips regarding tools that have helped him advance in his editing career. “Trying to get your foot in the door in television editing isn’t easy,” said Betzel. “One way that helped me get my foot in the door was learning software not every editor is confident in using.” Betzel showed attendees the ease of using MAXON’S Cinema 4D, which can at times seem intimidating, by using presets such as the House Builder in Cinema 4D R16 Visualize Edition where graphics can be created in minutes that typically would have been outsourced to a graphics team, costing both more time and money. Betzel explains, “Cinema 4D is not just a standard 3D application. It has tools that allow the user to not have to think about complicated toolsets or keystrokes, but instead focus on the creative story telling side of visual effects.” Cinema 4D’s preset library also gives users one click access to tools like 3 point lighting setups and the most impressive library of paint textures that would ordinarily have to be created by hand. In addition, Betzel discussed how Adobe After Effects can be a huge asset to an editor’s toolbox and even more powerful when combined with Video CoPilot’s Element 3D. Betzel commented “With a little bit of effort any editor or assistant editor comfortable with a non linear editorial system can pick up a few quick tips by watching the myriad of tutorials on YouTube to set themselves apart from the rest of the pack. In my own life, this took my career to the next level.”

The next Editors’ Lounge will be held on Friday, June 26th at AlphaDogs in Burbank, CA. To register visit

About the Editors Lounge: The Editors Lounge is a hands-on seminar for industry professionals. Each month, scores of professionals in the production and post-production industries exchange ideas, discuss trends and learn about new technologies; allowing editors to have their questions addressed objectively. To learn more visit


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