Chop Chop

I’m back! I haven’t posted for a while because I’ve been tremendously busy editing APPOINTMENT IN VANCOUVER, which entails sitting in front of a computer all day.  By the time I’m doing my last open-apple-s, I’m extraordinarily uninterested in remaining in front of the computer to write a blog entry.  In fact, I’m extraordinarily uninterested in thinking about anything besides having an alcoholic beverage and non-work talk with people who make me laugh.

Editing requires a very specific kind of energy.  Your focus must be centered dually on the details and mechanics of sewing picture and sound together in an appealing, effective manner AND simultaneously grasping the bigger picture of the narrative and the story’s overall impact and arch. The latter objective is more important to fulfill, but both intentions are paramount and symbiotically. You can tell a great story, but if the cuts are horrendous the audience could check out, get distracted, lose the story.  You can have beautiful shots that are seamlessly strung together but don’t tell a story… and are a waste of a filmgoer’s time.

For me, editing is exhausting and invigorating because, like writing, a profound amount of possibilities exist at an your finger tips – invigorating! Yet, at the same time, a profound amount of possibilities exist at your fingertips – exhausting!  And you’re on a deadline.  And you’re sick of seeing your (in the case of a documentary) subject’s face. And you’re wondering if you can make a sound byte about being hungry for burritos sound like a sound byte about being hungry for a gold medal.  Filmmaking! Tricky, manipulative, creative stuff.

I’ve always had tremendous respect for editors — feeling that of all the key crew positions they are the most akin to directors in their scope of influence.  This experience of editing AIV confirms that respect tenfold.  It also proves yet again that:

1. I love editors specifically all the ones that are better at editing than me.

2. I have no intentions of being one.

3. I am ridiculously lucky to know editors whose gifts in this discipline equal my talents in directing.  I am grateful to have worked with these people and plan to continue working with them because us together with a great project is a talent sandwich that needs to be served.

But for right now, I’m editing. This is because of budget and because I’m unwilling to give up on this project. I believe in it, so I will do whatever it takes to get it done. My producer, Seth, feels the same way. Right now that ‘whatever it takes’ means brushing off my editing skills from undergrad, remembering shortcut key strokes, and relying on the fact that I know this story and this footage better than anyone.  I may not be an editor, but for right now I’ve got to be.

Next Week: I might have fresh news on the book option I’ve been working on for, get this, over a year…


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One Response to “Chop Chop”

  1. sarah Says:

    Can you make it sound like he’s hungry for gold medal burritos?

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