Can you tell us some of the recent projects you’ve worked on?
I worked on the third season of Netflix’s You, premiering this fall and winter. It is awesome! I left a little early to work on a new movie, Cheaper By The Dozen for Disney +. It will be super funny and cute. I love editing comedies. It puts me in a great mood.
What’s the best way for aspiring editors to find clients or projects? What have you learned about dealing, compromising, and setting boundaries with difficult clients?
I don’t work with difficult people. Luckily, I have reached the level of my career that I can choose what I work on. Working with people that I like is my most important requirement. I pick the project based on the people prior to what the project is or how awesome or important it will be. When I interview, I am interviewing the director as much as she or he is interviewing me. A happy life is super important to me.
Is it encouraged for an editor to have a reel? If so, what kind of samples should it include?
I do not have a reel. I have not had one in decades. But there are times and types of reels that you should have: commercial and promo editing. Find a reel that you like and imitate it.
Are there particular source materials you could recommend that aspiring post-production professionals should use to improve their craft?
Just shoot stuff with your phone or download stuff off the internet. You become a better editor by editing. There is no other way. Working on free projects is even better. Learning how to deal with the editor/director/producer relationship is a huge part of the job. You can only learn it by doing it.
The pandemic has greatly affected the entertainment industry. How did it affect your side of things?
I was working on a movie, Bliss, when COVID hit. When we shut down in February, we copied everything on an external drive. Three months later when we started up again, we cloned that drive. I was in LA and my Assistant Editor (AE) was in New York. We ended up just passing projects back and forth using Dropbox. It worked great.
After Bliss, I worked on You for Netflix. On this project, we worked using remote systems that ran AVIDs in Hollywood. We used a remote system called “Jump Desktop.” It worked great. I loved it. Other than a lower video resolution it was like being in the room.
Now I am working on a movie and we are back working in the offices at FOX. It is nice to be back in the office.
What do you think the future of filmmaking will look like? What kind of stories do you think will capture the attention of producers and executives?
There will be so much content. So many stories. Everyone will have something they love. In the age of Mank, TikTok, and The Bachelor, there is something for everyone. Try and work in a medium you love. If you are not in that medium (you are stuck in promos and want to work in non-scripted) move over as soon as possible. Don’t let years go by thinking about the move.
What’s your advice to aspiring post-production professionals who want to break into the industry?
Make friends. 99% of all jobs you get will be from your friends. So make friends. Make great friends. Go on bike rides. Have coffee. Play golf. Talk politics. That is the best thing you can do for your career.