EDIT FEST NY
I met one of my professional heroes today -- film editor Thelma Schoonmaker.
She was a guest panelist at EditFest NY this weekend. The seminar took place at the Director's Guild of America in Manhattan. What is EditFest? It's two days of information, education and networking with some of the best editors in the movie and television industry today. It's presented by American Cinema Editors (ACE) and Manhattan Edit Workshop.
So I was over the moon thrilled to meet her and have the chance to thank her personally for her work. Many of her movies are on my Top Ten Movie List and probably yours. After her panel talk, she stuck around to talk with fellow editors, both seasoned and aspiring, posed for pictures, signed autographs and answered personal and professional questions. She said editors need patience above all else and should always get the job done no matter what. At 70, she continues to learn new technology... now editing digitally on an Avid rather than with film... and although it took some adjustment to change, she loves the challenge and work. She cautioned that all the tools in the world won't make up for a movie with a weak story. It all comes down to basic storytelling in the end.
The editors of Avatar (John Refoua and Stephen Rivkin, minus James Cameron) were also on hand.
Directors, producers, studios executives, preview audiences all demand constant changes to a film... and like a screenwriter forced to do yet another rewrite on a screenplay... the best editors always find a way to dig deeper and come up with what it takes.
Special thanks to Rubenstein Communications, Inc. and Tessa Kelley for inviting The NY Screenwriting Blog to cover this event. Photos courtesy of Carolina Correa.
Until next time. Go enjoy a summer movie.