Category Archives: Film Editor

EDITING THE MORE SENSITIVE PARTS: LUIZ SCHIEL

Technology has brought the entire world closer. Social media such as Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook have given a global platform to anyone who desires it. What one gains in exposure, you lose in privacy. The generational difference of opinion on this is vast. Older generations are wary while younger generations don’t even think about an idea as archaic as privacy. It’s certain that different ages and different cultures feel differently about discussing the topic of sex. V-Card the Film is a perfect example of how society’s discussion of the subject has changed. The film’s editor Luiz Henrique Schiel Gigolotti understood that he needed to be as precise as a surgeon to navigate the subject matter of which could both attract or offend differing viewers. The duplicity was challenging for Luiz as he wanted the artist’s message to ring true while still representing the humor and real social stigma associated with the main character Dillon’s situation. The proper editing can completely change the audience’s decision to respect or feel pity for the protagonist.

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V-Card is the story of Dillon, a twenty-three year old virgin. Dillon has been trying but things haven’t worked out as planned. Depending on your cultural and religious background you might be offended or intrigued by his story. Luiz’s job as an editor is to help the filmmakers find that middle ground that interests everyone without turning them away. Dillon is a likeable, early 20’s New Yorker with a job, friends, & the things that most of us desire. Dillon is the film’s proxy for all of us to examine how we feel about virginity. The question put to the audience is whether we make our own decision about when we lose it or if we feel pressured by society to make it occur within a certain time frame in order to feel “normal.” The documentary examines Dillon’s life and feelings as well as those of random interviewees (and some scheduled ones) from many different cultural, racial, sexual, and social backgrounds. The star and writer of V-Card is Dillon Birdsall. When Dillon approached Luizto be the film’s editor, he was eager to accept. Gigolotti recalls, “When Dillon asked me to edit V-Card, I didn’t think twice about jumping into this project. The challenges of editing a feature documentary are something that I really get excited about, even more so with a film like this that so openly discusses a subject that many people are still uncomfortable talking about on a personal level.”

Editing is sometimes thankless. When it is done poorly, the audience is aware of it and a film seems cluttered and cumbersome. When editing is highly professional, you become lost in the story and don’t notice the skillful editing. An editor’s job is not for those who require constant praise. Still, editors are just as much a part of the creative process as the cinematographer, director, and others involved in filmmaking due to the fact that they have the ability to enhance the emotional impact the audience feels towards the action on screen. In a film like V-Card the emotions are varied and the different people involved in the discussion are very numerous. Once the actual filming has taken place, it’s Luiz’s job to connect the audience with Dillon and his interviewees, even when they sometimes only appear for seconds. Jamaal Green is the director (nominated at the Martha’s Vineyard African American Film Festival in 2014 for Chronicles of a Profiler) of V-Card the Film and the person who most closely works with Luiz on the tone set by the film. Jamal praises Gigolotti’s work stating, “Luiz is a vital asset to any film. He has become my go to person for editing and ‘After Effects.’ I can think of three specific projects we worked on in which his abilities took the films to a higher level. A good editor can present what you have and make it work, but a great editor will make what you have filmed look even better. That’s what Luiz has done with V-Card. He is an amazing artist and a pleasure to work with.”

In terms of his involvement in V-Card, there were some obvious challenges and other, less expected ones for Gigolotti. He explains, “Editing V-Card was a huge challenge in my career. When we talk about virginity or sexuality, there is always some concern to not offend the person we are talking to. In this specific case, I needed to make sure that the edit and the graphics are not offensive to the audience.” Far from offensive, thanks in large part to Luiz’s editing, V-Card achieves a heartfelt tone. Rather than leading the viewer to any judgment of Dillon, we are warmly invited to question our own experiences and how we perceive others who may have had radically different entrees into the world of human sexuality. The subject matter of the film could have taken several different and more highly salacious slants but Gigolotti worked with Dillon and Jamaal to place the topic in a nicely gift wrapped present with a colorful bow on top. That colorful bow was realized in the formatting of animation sequences. Luiz’s skill at combining real life footage and animation is a primary reason that he was asked to edit V-Card the Film. Dillon Birdsall, writer and star of V-Card the Film comments, “The main reason I hired Luiz for the film is because he is a fantastic editor, especially when it comes to after FX and animations. When we first seriously considered the idea of intermingling animation to the film, it was Luiz’s ideas and expertise that enabled us to successfully achieve the results we wanted. We needed a light heartedness that wasn’t gimmicky and also wouldn’t take you too far away from the storyline.  He has been a vital part of the documentary and brings a ton of great ideas and enthusiasm to the project. I’ve known him for a little over two years now and I’ve become a huge fan of his work. I feel very lucky to have worked with him and I definitely hope to do so again.”

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In addition to another documentary currently in production (Luiz admits to being smitten with this approach to telling a story), advertisements, and other films; Gigolotti has most recently been editing for Martha Stewart’s Living. The diversity and amount of work he finds in New York these days reaffirms his decision to move from Brazil to work in the US as an editor. He recognizes, “There are so many great artists, directors, and all around professionals in the industry here in the US. It seems like I am challenged everyday by people who only want the best. That’s what I always have wanted to be a part of, a community committed to always bringing their best.”

 

Spotlight on Award Winning Film Editor Shayar Bhansali!

Even at the start of his career as an editor back home in India, Shayar Bhansali was making innovative contributions to the entertainment industry with his work. The now multi-award winning film editor began his career as the visual media editor for The Big Indian Picture, India’s premiere online cinema magazine. Whereas most of India’s prior entertainment outlets focused on Bollywood fluff,  The Big Indian Picture offered audiences a serious look at the world of Indian film; and the videos Bhansali edited for the outlet earned the magazine national attention.

Bhansali recalls, “I worked with the producers to edit interview segments, and these interviews turned out to be so genre-defining that they became the first ever web-produced content to air on national television on NDTV Prime.”

After getting his feet wet as an editor in India, Bhansali moved to Los Angeles to complete his master’s at the world renowned American Film Institute. Once in the states, he dove in with full force creating a reputation for himself as an exponentially talented editor in the narrative film world. Some of his recent work includes Cusi Cram’s award-winning dramatic comedy “Wild & Precious,” which earned the Best Narrative Award from the NYLA International Film Festival, Mattson Tomlin’s family drama “Persuasion” and Stefan Kubicki’s “Against Night.”

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“Against Night” film crew and talent from left to right: Shayar Bhansali, Elena Caruso, Stefan Kubicki, Saba Zerehi, Konstantin Lavysh, Lucas Lechowski at AFI Fest presented by Audi. (Photo courtesy of AFI)

In addition to winning awards at the USA Film Festival, Woodstock Film Festival, Ojai Film Festival, as well as being nominated for several more from the American Society of Cinematographers and Guam International Film Festival, Kubicki’s drama “Against Night” also earned Bhansali international recognition for his work. Delicately weaving together the story of a cosmonaut who struggles to deal with the haunting memory of the loss of his wife and young daughter, Bhansali’s work on the film earned the Festival Prize for Best Editing at the Kolkata International Film Festival in India and the June Award for Best Editing from the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival Awards in the US.

For Bhansali, the art of editing is all about striking a balance between the director’s vision and what his creative voice believes is best for the story.

“I find editing to be humbling and empowering at the same time – you’re constantly making decisions about the way in which a story unfolds, but you do this within the context of the director’s vision,” he explains. “This balance of finding my own expression and balancing it with the larger creative arc is what drew me into the world of filmmaking, and editing became a way of life before I knew it.”

One of the many unique aspects of Bhansali’s gift as an editor is his ability to adapt to the needs of a project and use his creativity to solve potential problems in a way that allows the production to flow seamlessly. His work as the editor on Tomlin’s 2014 film “Persuasion” speaks leagues to why these traits are such a vital asset to any production. “Persuasion” focuses on a father’s process of coming to grips with his son’s unnatural gift for controlling people’s behavior with David Kopelev (“The Escort,” “Heritage”) starring as the son and Gregory Linington (“Indigo,” “Dune”) as the father. Early in the developing story there is a scene where Kopelev’s character has a face off with a bear, an event that instills in the father the startling awareness of how truly powerful his son is.

Bhansali recalls, “Mattson was convinced that the only way to portray this scene in a realistic sense would be to shoot it with a real bear. Given that the child actor was only 7 years old, we had to come up with a way to use a motion controlled camera rig to shoot separate plates with the bear and child, and combine them in post production with the help of visual effects supervisor Mike Pappa.”

To ensure that the production captured the two separate shots in a way that would make it possible for Bhansali to seamlessly combine them in post, the visionary editor actually spent quite a bit of time on set during those shoot days providing quick mock-ups to show the team what the scenes would like. When most of us think of a film editor we imagine them tied to their desk spending hours upon hours cutting and sewing footage together; and while that’s mostly true, having an editor like Shayar Bhansali on set can mean the difference between saving time and money or having to go back and do those dreaded reshoots.

“This level of involvement is becoming more common for an editor and when done efficiently, I find it can be an irreplaceable tool for the director and production crew,” admits Bhansali.

Much of what drives Bhansali’s work as an editor is the inherent power that comes with job to change and shape the story; he enjoys the laborious and highly creative process of sifting through hours of fragmented pieces of footage, fusing the perfect shots into fluid scenes and purposefully forming a coherent whole that will impact viewers.

He explains, “I like the process through which we rewrite the story with editing, the power to manipulate and curate the emotions of our audience with every decision we make. I’ve always been drawn to the inner workings of a film, understanding how structure and scene construction influences the way we relate to characters and story – and editing for me gives me the opportunity to do this every day with every project I work on.”  

From his work as the editor of the interview series “Tete-a-Tete” broadcast on NDTV to the powerful stories he crafted as the editor of the films “Loveland,” “La Bella,” “Persuasion,” “Against Night,” “Zoya” and “Wild & Precious,” Bhansali has amassed an impressive repertoire of work that spans several mediums and practically every genres.

Up next for Shayar Bhansali is the film  “Rene” starring multi-award winning actor Xander Berkeley (“Taken,” “Airforce One,” “Justified”), and the film “Shinje,” which is in preproduction and will be directed by Stefan Kubicki.

Film Editor Pavel Khanyutin Cuts to the Heart of the Matter

The film editor is one of cinema’s true behind the scenes wizards, one who can escalate the intensity of any sequence, deftly manipulating the action and emotion in a way few other production contributors—whether writer, actor or director—are as readily able to match. Russian editor and visual effects supervisor Pavel Khanyutin, known for cutting with surgical precision and an acute sense of pace, is an ideal example of this dynamic, almost alchemical skill.

For more than a decade, Khanyutin has exerted a strong influence on his country’s visual experience, as a film editor and through his influential use of CGI—he made significant impact supervising VFX in Timur Bekmambetov’s popular 2004 fantasy thriller Night Watch and Andrey Kavun’s 2010 war drama Kandagar. He also excels in his other professional capacity, conceiving and directing commercial advertising spots.

Khanyutin’s relish is evident in whatever he takes on, and his 16 years as a creator of television spots for high end prestige clients have been an enjoyable pursuit that has produced many notable achievements, crafting memorable pieces for Google, Coca Cola, Ikea, Pepsi’s Adrenaline Rush, Panasonic, Mars, Nike, cellular network Megafon and many others.

“In advertising the tough deadlines and limited time make the process almost like a competitive sport.” Khanyutin said. “However, there always remain enough possibilities for creative work, in the storytelling and sophisticated editing.”

But it’s working as an editor and visual effects supervisor where he derives the most satisfaction; in Russia, after all, the art of film cutting has a particularly rich heritage, going back to groundbreaking mid-1920’s giants Sergei Eisenstein and Grigor Aleksandrov.

“In editing, the possibilities are nearly unlimited, and it’s almost impossible to overestimate its importance.” Khanyutin said. “It’s a language in which films speak to the viewer’s unconsciousness, and it can deliver every shade of emotion, just as speech does. This is the most interesting, most complicated aspect and is also what allows a film to really get inside a viewer’s head. It’s almost like metaphysics—a visual philosophy.”

“Each project is interesting in its own way.” He said. “Editing documentary films is a very special process, you could almost say that the movie is coming to life in the editing room—getting precise emotions, different shades, from the material is the challenge—to create a great piece of work. I am lucky that I had a lot of documentary experience at the beginning of my career.”

Khanyutin’s personal involvement with every project is intense. “Working on a feature film is a different matter.” Khanyutin said. “To tell a colorful story, it’s very important to really dip down into it, to lead everything through one’s own self, to believe in characters, yet always be sensible. Then every cut will be as conscious and meaningful as sounds in speech. And the time spent in the editing room—it could be one month or one year—becomes part of you. You even see it in dreams.”

That tireless commitment to film gains Khanyutin tremendous professional advantage. “I’ve worked with Pavel as directors and editors always work together—I’ve dropped material off at his door to do with as he pleases, and I’ve sat, lurking over his shoulder, for up to a dozen hours at a time.” Film maker-screenwriter Michael Kupisk said. “In both cases I found Pavel’s instinct and touch to be invaluable in terms of defining the final outcome of the product. He was able to show me angles and methods of delivering a beat or turn that I hadn’t anticipated and is always thinking of how to make the movie better. What I admire most about Pavel is his innate rhythm and instinct. He adds something to the project that is satisfying to both the filmmakers’ vision and the audience’s viewership of the material.”

Khanyutin’s singular grasp on how best to manipulate raw footage is an invaluable asset, and his singular propensity to anticipate and deliver a finished product that really reaches deep down into an audience’s emotions qualifies him as a cinema auteur with illimitable potential. For Khanyutin, his professional goals are simple and straightforward, best summed up in three words:

“More good movies.”

Director Marcelo Galvão’s ‘Bounty Hunter’ has found its prized editor

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Beto Araujo is bringing his editorial talents to “The Bounty Hunter.”

The award-winning film and TV director Marcelo Galvão has selected Beto Araujo as editor for his forthcoming feature western movie, “The Bounty Hunter.” Araujo, an 18-year editing master in advertising, music videos and TV, brings a world of talent and experience to the forthcoming production.

Galvão penned the script and the story follows a feared killer living in the countryside of the Brazilian state of Pernambuco between the 1910s and 1930s.

“Beto was highly recommended by my friend and colleague, Fernando Sanches, and after meeting him and talking about the project, I believe he has the skills and the passion that I’m looking for,” said Galvão.

The film is being produced by Galvão’s production company, Gatacine. It is scheduling to film in Brazil and release next year in the U.S. and Brazil. As a release in Brazil, the western will be titled “O Matador.”

“This film is one international audiences will gravitate towards,” Araujo said. “It has a great cinematic story, dynamic characters, drama, action and it’s all set against the beautiful backdrop of early 20th century Brazil. Marcelo is an amazing, award-winning director who can deliver this western period piece in an extraordinary way.”

Creative, achieved, talented and recognized internationally, Araujo edited four episodes of HBO Latin America’s, “Psi,” including the series’ pilot and Season 1 finale. He edited a MTV VMA nominated music video for the Brazilian rock band, Nação Zumbi, and has edited hundreds of commercials and advertising promos including for brands such as Coca-Cola, Google, Samsung, VW, Ford, Visa and many more.

“Beto’s body of work shows the kind of versatility I was looking for in an editor,” Galvão said. “His work for HBO was nominated for Best Drama on last year’s international Emmy and his diverse work in advertising covers almost every possible editing style. All of that shows me that he is a passionate professional that put his best on all his projects and I want this passion and dedication on my project.”

Galvão, from Rio de Janeiro, wrote, produced and directed the 2014 feature drama, “Farewell.” The film told the story of a 92-year old man who decides it’s time to say goodbye to all that’s important in his life, including his lover who is 55 years younger. It won 15 international film festival awards including Best Film at the Los Angeles Brazilian Film Festival. Galvão is also known for directing the award-winning films, “Buddies,” “La riña” and “Quarta B.”

For “The Bounty Hunter,” plot details are being kept under wraps, but the story features a captivating protagonist who was abandoned as a baby, raised in the wild by a bounty-hunting bandit and eventually becomes a feared bounty hunter himself.

The film will have story elements of old-fashioned vigilante justice, drama, action and revenge. The characteristics of the premise drive the editorial strategy and also create an opportunity within the filmmaking process.

“I believe that Western period movies made nowadays have a total freedom regarding editorial approach,” Galvão said. “For me, “The Bounty Hunter” requires editing skills both drama and for fast-paced action sequences.”

It’s a challenge Araujo is ready to oversee. He’s experienced with fast cutting and also knows how to strike the balance needed with slower, dramatic scenes.

“Cutting dramatic scenes and action scenes differ in terms of pacing, sequencing, tone and seamless continuity,” said Araujo, who is from Sao Paulo, Brazil. “With drama, the beats are slower and we’re serving the story that’s being driven by the characters who are layered and evolving. With action and fight sequences, it’s about creating the desired speed and tempo, and visually presenting what’s happening with a real force behind it. We want to make the action authentic and stylized, but also show the movements with clarity so the audience can see what’s unfolding.”

Previously, Araujo edited “O Desejo de Saiuri,” a short film from writer-director Fernando Sanches, and “The Side of the Door,” from writer-director Joao Simi.

He edited Getty Images’ “85 Seconds” campaign that won many awards including the 2013 Gold Lion for Editing, the 2014 Gold for Best Editing at the El Ojo de Iberomerica and the Bronze award in Editing at the New York Festivals International Television and Film Awards.

Among Araujo’s many other editing accolades, he cut the “Black and White” commercial for Skip, a laundry detergent manufacturer, that won a 2010 Cannes Silver Lion. He also edited BIC’s “Declaracao de Amor” (Declaration of Love) spot that won the Bronze at El Ojo and was shortlisted at the renowned Cannes Film Festival.

For more information, visit http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2337991/ and www.betoaraujo.com.

Editor David Guthrie Nails the Perfect Cut

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Editor David Guthrie shot by Nick Nelson

 

In the entertainment industry, every creative position on a production plays a vital role to its success, and the job of the editor might be the most important of all. Even more so than the writer’s words or the actor’s lines, the editor is responsible for crafting the final version of what the spectator sees.

The editor helps make the footage speak to the audience, which is exactly why David Guthrie stands out among some of the most brilliant editors working in the industry today. Without his wonderful ability to tell a story, the sheer volume of film footage from the productions to which he’s lent his skill would lack a cohesive narrative. 

“Most of the skill in editing comes from making creative decisions, what shot to use where, what music tracks to use, the pacing, rhythm, etc. All of that is easily done on all three platforms,” according to Guthrie.

The Toronto born editor has a knack for creating an effective, riveting story regardless of how many hundreds of hours of footage he has to sort through. Guthrie has also benefited from having a background in music, which greatly enhances the cadence of his edits.

“You try a hundred different tracks of music and none of them are the right one and you just don’t know why and then you find the one that works and you just know, you can feel it and then you cut it in and the whole scene comes to life.”

Guthrie’s exceptional talent landed him the role of editor on the critically acclaimed televised adaption Billy Bishop Goes To War  directed by Academy Award nominee Barbara Willis Sweet, as well as the smash hit documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi.

Currently streaming on Netflix, Jiro Dreams of Sushi has been an official selection at numerous festivals including Toronto, Berlin, and New Zealand International Film Festivals, as well as the Tribeca Film Festival.

After the documentary’s overwhelming feat, Guthrie took on the challenge of working on the labor intensive Weather Channel reality show Cold Water Captains.

“You can give me hundreds of hours of footage with no direction and I can sift through it and find the story thread. Having a writer‘s approach to editing has always been my strong suit, as well as having a music background,” says Guthrie regarding his editing process.  

In Guthrie’s next project, he carried multiple hats as a director, writer, editor and star in the TV comedy Room & Bored. The project paid off immensely by becoming an official selection at the New York Television Festival, which led Guthrie to secure a development deal with the Gannett Network.

The outstanding editor recently completed production on the comedy series Beck & Call, produced by Rockfield Productions, Inc.  The series follows two talent agents struggling to make it in Brooklyn. Season 1 of the show is slated to be released later this year.

Regardless of the genre or medium, David Guthrie’s remarkable editing prowess has placed him among the best editors in the industry; and, as he continues to flex his skill across platforms, it seems there is literally no stopping this talented Canadian.

 

Q & A with Leading Film Editor Sunghwan Moon

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Korean Film Editor Sunghwan Moon

Today Korean-born film editor Sunghwan Moon is living out his childhood dream of working on large-scale narrative film productions, but, as is the way with turning most worthwhile dreams into reality, his rise to the top didn’t come without a lot of hard work and effort on his part.

After spending several years as a lead editor for movie and TV series trailers including the ones for the film Kong-Zi, the series Iris and the promos for the film 71- Into The Fire and those for the Disney and Disney Jr. channels in Korea, Moon moved to Los Angeles to attend American Film Institute, a prestigious conservatory program that only accepts a maximum of 14 film editors from around the world every year. A major stepping-stone in his career, Moon received his master’s in film editing from AFI, which allowed his to make further connections in the American film industry while making his mark as a leading editor for films.

Prior to working as the editor of the films And The Wind Falls, Tracks, Head Trauma, Together Alone, The Lost Generation and many others, Moon was already well-versed in editing hours of footage into seamless stories for the screen. Earlier on in his career he established himself as a leading international music video editor through his work on the videos for Loveholics’ song “A Good Tain Knows,” Winterplay’s “Cha-Cha,” Shin Seung-hun’s “Love of Iris,” Baek Ji-young’s “Don’t Forget Me,” and K-pop artist Standing Egg’s songs “Kiss Me,” “MAM-E-GEOL-LYEO,” and “NA-O-NEUL-TTA-RA.”

The unfortunate truth is that many people sit around and wait for their dreams to happen to them, believing that their fated break into what ever industry they wish will just come if they are patient– Moon’s story is the exact opposite. Instead, his is one of perseverance and tenacity. After years of slowly working his way to the top and never losing sight of his end goal, all of his dedication paid off. To find out more about how Sunghwan Moon got to where he is today make sure to check out our interview below!                                                                                                         

Where are you from? 

SM: I spent my childhood moving around until third grade due to my father’s job. We lived in a mid sized town called Gwangju, Korea until I was in high school, and then I moved to Seoul for university. After serving three years in the Air Force, I moved to Oakland, CA, before moving back to Seoul where I worked for a while and got married. Now I’m living in the US again.

How and when did you first get into working as an editor?

SM: I’ve always liked filmmaking so I dropped out of the university where I was majoring in Law in Korea and entered a small arts college in Oakland/S.F. in California as filmmaking major. At first, I wanted to be a director, but soon I found out that I enjoyed editing more than any other fields in filmmaking. I kept working that path, and got my first job at a small company that was creating video pieces for mobile services such as Verizon. After that, I ended up working mostly on trailers, promos, and music videos. After doing that for about eight years, I was accepted to AFI and now I work mostly on narrative movies.

What inspired you to pursue this profession?

SM: I always liked watching movies as a child. I would skip school, which I’m not so proud, and go to a theater and watch the same movie again and again. I always wanted to do something related to film. I first wanted to be a film critic, but while attending college, I found that editing was the most fun thing to do. You shape the performance, the rhythm, the emotion– the movie is really created in a cutting room.

How important is formal education to getting a job in the industry?

SM: It’s important in a sense because it can help you make connections. People say how good you are is the most important, but it’s also important whom you know.

Can you describe some of the projects you’ve worked on and some of the challenges you’ve faced?

SM: I was the sole editor on the trailers for Iris, the No.1 hit TV series in Korea in 2009, which consisted of 20 episodes, and I cut the trailers for each episode. The schedule here in the US can be crazy, but in Korea it is very common to shoot an episode in the morning and then air it that same night. I would get the script they were out shooting, and do a paper cut – meaning I would select the lines and shots based on the script, then select the music, then do the basic editing on paper. Once they finished shooting, I’d request the footage and quickly grab what I had pre-selected. Then if I felt I needed something else, I would look into other parts of the footage. This might not be an ideal method, but given such a short time to cut, it worked well for me.

Disney launched the Disney and Disney Jr. channels in Korea in July 2011 and I joined the team in January as the leader of the editing team, as well as a lead editor for the On-Air-Promotions team. We created all the promos/previews for these two channels. As a team leader, I also had to supervise other editors on their work and I really enjoyed working with the other team members. In many cases, creating the promos involved a meeting with the producers and editors since sometimes what the producers imagined in their heads wasn’t possible. We had to create many promos every week with a fairly tight schedule, but everyone collaborated well and it always went well.

I was the editor on the 8 series scripted show Fall Into Me for Lifetime. The story of the series I worked on was pretty classical – a normal girl meets a billionaire who she used to know in high school, but they wanted to give a bit of an ‘indie movie’ feel to it. We had to try to balance between a romantic comedy and an indie movie. I’ve known the director since AFI, so it was easy for both of us to communicate. Although we had never worked together before, we still shared the same education, which provided us with the same basic foundation and let us speak the same language. From a creative point of view, most challenges come from a lack of communication with the director; but that wasn’t the case this time. The director knew what she wanted and she understood what could be done and what she had to let go of.

I also edited the film And The Wind Falls, which was a bit of challenge since the story wasn’t typical. It was written in a way so that the story would unfold with subtlety. Things happen to the main character, but so many things are only implied that you will miss them if you’re not engaged completely. I’ve worked with the director before this – we worked on two music videos and then a web series pilot together after this project. We worked hard and I’m glad that our hard work got some recognitions from others including getting a Special Mention at Singapore Short Film Awards.

The director’s vision here was very clear for the film Tracks. He and the DP shot the film in a way so that the camera looks at the main character all the time like a documentary. Our reference movie was Fish Tank, directed by Andrea Arnold. During pre-production, I was very curious about how the director and the editor on Fish Tank worked together. So, I managed to find the editor’s contact info, I emailed him and we ended up having a conversation. We met a little later when he came to the U.S. to edit Still Alice (starring Julianne Moore), and became friends. He told me the story of how he approached Fish Tank, and it helped me a lot. The actor did a great job so I didn’t have to worry about making cuts to the performance, which helped me immensely. As I said, it was shot in a way that the camera never rests, and it keeps following the main character. I tried to respect how it was shot and edit accordingly. And this film got into many festivals around the world including this year’s AFI FEST.

What tools do you use to edit? Avid? Final Cut? Etc. And what are the primary differences?

SM: My main tool is Avid, but I also use other software such as Final Cut Pro and Premiere. The only difference is the speed just because I’m more used to Avid than others. There are certain things that one is better at accomplishing than the others; and I feel Avid is better for cutting narrative films than other programs are.

What is it that you love about working as an editor?

SM: I respect what everyone does in the process of making a film. However, I feel it’s in the cutting room that the film is finally created in its final form. I love the feeling of being able to shape the rhythm, the performance, and finally create the story and the emotion through the film.

Also, if you are lucky and get to work with a good director, you’ll learn a lot while working with them. In a small editing suite, you talk to a director a lot. And you get to learn a lot. I think I’ve been lucky in that sense. So, in a sense, a cutting room is a working place as well as a learning place to me.

What separates you from the rest of the pool of editors in Hollywood? What is your specialty in the field?

SM: I have a background as an editor on trailers/music videos for eight years. I believe it has given me a better rhythmic sense. Also, I have a different cultural background as well, and I am sure it provides a unique point of view on a story.

Can you tell me a little bit about your editing process? Once you get the footage, where do you start?

SM: Once I get the footage, I try to understand what a director wants to achieve in each take and scene. If a director does multiple takes, I try to understand why. Once I get the footage, I don’t rely on the script as much. Yes, I’ll go back to a script to make sure I haven’t missed any small things that are intended for the story; however, I try to see what is actually captured in camera. In general, I believe how the footage is shot tells you how to edit. The footage tells you how to cut.

What is the collaboration process like in terms of working with the other departments on a project?

SM: There is a very popular comment from Jeong-min Hwang, the most famous actor in Korea. He once said something like, “All the other people prepared such a great meal. I did nothing. I just added my fork and knife, and enjoyed the meal. It was all possible because of them who prepared the meal.” I feel pretty much the same. So, I try to maintain solid communication with everyone so that there’s no room for misunderstandings.

Up to how long can it take to complete the editing on a project?

SM: It all depends on a project.

I’ve heard people say an editor can be sitting at their computer for up to 14 hours a day working on something—is this accurate? If so how do you stay focused?

SM: Yes, that’s possible. When I worked for a trailer company, I used to have to work even longer than 24 hours straight many times. I do not have any special way to focus. Since I do what I like to do, I don’t have to struggle to focus. I think all editors like their jobs. But I have to say it’s not healthy and it’s less productive to work for too long without taking a break. You get to be more creative when you take a break.

What projects do you have coming up?

SM: I’m currently working as the assistant editor on the feature film In Dubious Battle, directed by James Franco.

Do you have a passion for working on a specific kind of film or project, if so what kind of project and why?

SM: Although I’m leaning towards feature films, I wouldn’t mind doing a TV series as long as it has a good story. A good story is probably the only thing that matters.

 

 

 

A Magician of the Cut: Film Editor Vladimir Boboshin

Film Editor Vladimir Boboshin
Film Editor Vladimir Boboshin

For most people who do not work in the film industry there is a grave misconception of the scope of work and talent involved in an editor’s work. Often times editors are thought to simply compile footage selected by the director and sequence sounds created by the music department, but this is rarely, if ever the case.

The editor is a creative cornerstone of any production, he or she is the one who sifts through hundreds and sometimes thousands of takes and personally selects and sequences the best scenes in a way that brings the story to life. An integral force in the creation of hundreds of visually and auditorily captivating productions, Russian native Vladimir Boboshin is the kind of editor that leads a project to success.

Earlier this year Vladimir worked as an editor on the world’s first 24-hour music video which featured seven-time Grammy Award winning artist Pharrell Williams’ hit song “Happy.” “Happy” received the award for Song of the Year at the BBC Music Awards and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song in the film Despicable Me 2 earlier this year.

Something that sets Vladimir Bobshin apart from other editors his love for music and sound in general. The editor explains, “I’m sort of a sound nut and maybe I pay more attention to the sound edit than others. I can edit, cleanup and mix the sound if needed and I did that for the Serta Sleep Systems and Fast Company projects this year here in LA.”

As the editor of several spots for Fast Company’s “Business Simplified” campaign including the spots entitled ‘Simple Advice on Making Creative Ideas Happen,’

‘Simple Advice For Optimizing Social Media,’ and ‘Simple Advice For Working Smarter, Not Harder,’ Vladimir was able to create a series of short, yet highly informative, advice driven projects that assist business owners in reaching their goals, while also promoting the company. Vladimir’s ability to sync and create a symbiotic relationship between the project’s visual and audio elements helped create an end product that is both easy for viewers to understand and entertaining at the same time.

Vladimir Boboshin also worked as the editor of five spots for the Serta Sleep Systems’ promo entitled “iComfort Challenge” earlier this year. The spots follow actual Serta customers using their new iComfort mattress over the course of several weeks comparing their experiences with their previous mattress and their new iComfort. Mixing all of the music in the spots himself, Vladimir creates a feeling that is light, fun and whimsical, and entices audiences to embark on a new life with the Serta’s new iComfort mattress.

Vladimir discovered his passion for the relationship between sound and visuals and the feelings evoked by the combination in his youth. The editor makes it a point to pay special attention to the sound aspects of every project he works on, a feature that continues to pull audiences into each and every story he brings to life on screen.

“I try to find the musical balance in the sequence of pictures, and make them play well with each other,” says Vladimir. “I edit music pretty heavily when needed altering the level balance, as well as EQ and filters, as those are, in my opinion, very underrated tools that help to make the music cue work.”

Over the course of his career Vladimir Boboshin has worked as the lead editor on a variety of commercial, music video, television and feature film productions. Vladimir has been the editor of numerous award-winning commercials including “Chase” for Tele-2, which received the Bronze Award at the 25 kaDR Professional Contest for Television Advertising, “Army” and “Office” for Alfabank, which received the Grand Prix Award at the Red Apple Moscow International Advertising Festival, Ikea’s “Sleepwalker,” which received the Bronze Award at the Red Apple Moscow International Advertising Festival, as well as many more.

To check out some of Vladimir Boboshin’s unparalleled editing work check out his website http://pixtrim.com/portfolio_tag/best/