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What Do Our Members Do?



SHARON SMITH HOLLEY - VISUAL EFFEXTS (VFX) EDITOR

November 2019

Where are you currently employed?

On location in Virginia Beach, VA. We are currently in director’s cut. Our director, Derrick Borte, lives here.

 

Current Project?

The feature film “Unhinged” for Solstice Studios.

 

Describe Your Job.

I have worked for 25 years as a VFX Editor, which includes organizing shots and working with the artists/vendors to create shots the director and editor have envisioned. I’ve sat with VFX artists at effects houses and walked them through complicated line-ups of the film elements, which gives me another perspective on VFX workflow.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

After I saw “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” I wanted to know more of the process of mixing live action with animation.

 

Who gave you your first break?

Robert Altman was filming where I grew up. I interned with his production sound mixer for school credit. Robert gave me complete access to go to set and watch dailies with the crew. Only thing I couldn’t do was go to the bar at wrap with everyone. I was underage and, frankly, more interested in going to the local ice cream parlor. I think I’m still that way.

 

What was your first union job?

“Texasville,” which turned union after it returned from shooting in Texas. I had met the editor Rick Fields and first assistant Ron Krehel when I was doing production sound in Florida on “Illegally Yours.” They brought me on as an apprentice and helped me get in the union.

 

What credits or projects are you proudest of, and why?

On the film “Cobb,” which was my first VFX Editing job, the producer entrusted me with a lot. I was responsible for every part of the VFXs: not just turnovers but supervising shot design (it’s exciting to draw something on paper and then see it up on the screen), judging wedges for color, approving finals, and looking at bids and budgeting. When I wrapped, he and the director gave me a bonus check — and my first VFX Editor credit.

 

For the recently released “Gemini Man,” there was a lot of prep for material to be used in reference monitors on the stage. I was set up on the sound stage with my Avid for motion control filming; there was a lot of it, as one of our characters was all CG. We watched dailies in 120fps/3D on location in Savannah and Budapest, and we had a “lab” group that traveled with us to process dailies, color-correct, and work with the 3D. Editor Tim Squyres joined us in Budapest so he and director Ang Lee could lock down sequences for VFX turnovers.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

Getting the crew to take lunch breaks and sit together is always a challenge. I list a lunch table and chairs on my equipment list. It reminds the producers that we will be taking lunch and gives the crew a place to gather.

 

What was the most fun youve had at work?

On “Cobb,” I drew a title design for the “Movietone” newsreel, a black-and-white film shown within our film. Ron Shelton, the director, liked it and I met with the Pacific Title designer to have him create my art.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

Working with people I enjoy being around, who are reasonable and kind. In other words, more of the same of what I am grateful to have been a part of.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

I’ve always loved photography and my work has been published in several magazines. Traveling is another priority. I have been able to incorporate exploring the world and meeting the local people into both my career and down-time. I also need something creative in my life. Nothing better than having a paint brush in my hand and colors staining my fingers.

 

However, my passion without a doubt is my involvement with the Editors Guild Archives and Academy Oral History Projects. It’s so rewarding when we interview people who are delighted to share their stories. I also love treasures from the past, so having a post-production “museum” at the MPEG Archive offices has fulfilled a dream. It helps share our history with our membership and students, and it’s another fun way for members to share their memories of working in film and TV.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

Like most kids my age “Star Wars,” but I also loved “What’s Up Doc” and films I worked on like “Stuart Little,” “Aladdin,” “The Time Machine,” and “Men In Black 3.”  I really like traveling through time, so “Somewhere in Time,” “Back to the Future,” “Groundhog Day,” and “Midnight in Paris.”

 

I also like to watch films about the film industry. Among many, one of my faves is “Ma Femme est une Actrice.” Honestly, I just love movies. I have no problem watching three movies in a day.

 

Favorite TV program(s)? Why?

My tastes in TV shows are similar to films. Fun, quirky, visually creative shows hold my interest. I was a huge fan of “Jane the Virgin,” “Pushing Daisies,” and “Seinfeld.” Recently, “Russian Doll” and “Outlander. Because of my love of personal histories, “Finding Your Roots,” “Who Do You Think You Are,” “Modern Love,” and “Fosse/Verdon.”

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

Yes, although I doubt they know I think of them as mentors. I joke that Carol Littleton is my gardening mentor but she is more than that. Donn Cambern mentored me into getting on the Guild’s Board of Directors, for which I am so grateful.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Go to every film-related event in your area. Try talking to at least three people at each event. Be brave, be kind, and gracious. Who you are and how you treat people makes you unique and someone people will want to collaborate with. Live within your means; if you get a raise, don’t raise your standard of living. Save so you can wait for that job you really want to do.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

I am always asking for contract advice. If a member has a question, I call the Guild office on their behalf. As a board member, I keep it anonymous unless the member wants the inquiry to go further.

 

Is there anything youd like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

Take time off between jobs, if you can. Don’t wait till you retire to do your passion projects. Most important, know we are a family, an industry family. No matter how challenging life gets, we are here for each other.

 

Compiled by David Bruskin

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact davidnbruskin@gmail.com

MICHAEL BABCOCK - SUPERVISING SOUND EDITOR/SOUND DESIGNER/RE-RECORDING MIXER

October 2019

Where are you currently employed?

Warner Brothers.

 

Current Project?

Mixing “Dr. Sleep” (sequel to “The Shining”) for WB, and the TV series “See” for Apple.

 

Describe Your Job.

I’m a maker and/or polisher of sounds, interpreter of visions, organizer of creative elements, selector of team collaborators, reader of minds, navigator of constraints, and psychologist… for motion pictures and other content.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

In my teens, before I knew what this line of work was, I was fascinated with movie soundtracks and multichannel audio. I pressured my parents to become one of the first people on the block to upgrade to a Hi-Fi VCR and Dolby Pro-logic system. I spent a lot of time not just watching and listening to certain “great sound movies,” but listening to music through their great Hi-Fi system and a great pair of headphones. I studied how musical instruments were panned and how reverb, delays, and other effects were used to make a musical soundscape. I was also quite serious about being a musician. I got degrees in music performance, music engineering, and electrical engineering. That path led me directly to this line of work. The same day I graduated from the University of Miami, I was offered a job at a commercial post house in Hollywood called Margarita Mix.

 

Who gave you your first break?

Through a helpful network of alumni from the Music Engineering program I went through at UM, a guy named Myron Nettinga helped me get my first union sound editing job just three months out of college at the now-defunct Todd-AO. He gave me some great creative guidance, and I got thrown directly into the fire.

 

What was your first union job?

Cutting sound FX at Todd-AO, mostly for TV. I cranked out episodes of “Melrose Place,” “Beverly Hills 90210,” “Profiler,” and more.

 

What credits or projects are you proudest of, and why?

Any that give me the chance to work in conjunction with the music department. It marries my world of music with the film world. I love to work on things that are rhythmic or have a “musical” sensibility. For “War of the Worlds,” I was given a task to come up with the “factory sound” you heard whenever the tripods moved or were offscreen. I created a rhythmic machine sound using bits and pieces of manipulated pneumatics, rollercoasters, gears, dry ice groans and metal hits that were sequenced in ¾ time. (They are tripods, after all!) I actually had a private conversation during the dub with John Williams. He told me he really liked what I had done and thought it integrated with his score perfectly. That was literally the proudest I’ve ever been, and may ever be, in my career.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

I try to grow and improve at every turn, but my biggest challenge is facing the proverbial blank sheet of paper. Some of my cohorts thrive on that, but I do my most creative work when there are constraints. Whether it’s someone saying, “look in this direction,” or just a plain old time constraint, I thrive with just enough structure to fire up the inspiration. It’s like cheating writer’s block. I used to think that as I got more career experience and the years rolled by, the creative process would get easier. It hasn’t — my own doing, of course! You have to keep finding ways to go deeper, get better, and come up with something that approaches being “iconic.” To help accomplish this, I use a skill I learned from being a musician: Every once in a while, you have to put down your instrument and get out. Change your perspective somehow. It’s a little easier to push that rock uphill when you take a break and find another angle. Sometimes that can be getting closer to nature or doing yoga, but most often for me, it’s listening to music.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

I can answer this in two ways. The first is when I take a field trip to record something. The second involves conversations I’ve had with people I’m in the trenches with. It’s the 19th day straight on a dub stage and someone starts a conversation that leads to strange and hilarious places. There’s a lot of super-smart and downright interesting people in this business. If I were to make a Top 10 list of the times that I’ve laughed the hardest in my life, at least four of them would have been on a dub stage.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

Honestly, exactly what I’m doing now.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

Playing and listening to music, yoga, and helping steer my 13-year-old son in the right direction.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

“Top Gun” is partially why I’m in film sound. It was the first movie I rented when my parents got the new stereo Hi-Fi VCR. “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” is an ‘80s comedy that used sound NOT like a comedy. I studied the mix of this one many, many times. “The Hunt for Red October” is my favorite movie ever. My dream is to work on a submarine movie sometime in my career. The sound job on “Master and Commander” makes me sweat in my seat every time. “Toy Story 2” is an amazing example of filmmakers who understand how sound can vastly augment a story. Every part of this movie is genuinely inspired. In my opinion, it’s Pixar’s greatest movie, if only because it recognized animation once and for all as a true bastion of original storytelling and filmmaking.

 

Favorite TV program(s)? Why?

“Mindhunter” has great production value, and it’s crossed that line from episodic show to something that uses the medium for real character development. “Breaking Bad” — talk about a group of people that came together for a moment in time and fired on all cylinders to make something truly special! “Deadwood” has Shakespearean prose, acting and storytelling – and Old West gutter-swearing. I think “Top Gear” and its cousin “The Grand Tour” are among the most original, entertaining, informative, passionate, funny shows ever made.

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

I’ve been lucky to have a few, but the biggest one has been Richard King. Besides being a great sound designer and offering me opportunities to move up in the industry, he’s been a good friend and a great example of how to navigate the craziness of this business and remain a human being.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

A professor in college told me this can be a tough industry to get into, but there’s always room for talent. I find that to be quite true.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

Fortunately, not yet.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

We are a special, elite group of smart, creative and downright interesting people. I’m proud to be part of it.

 

Compiled by David Bruskin      

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact davidnbruskin@gmail.com

JILLINDA PALMER - MUSIC EDITOR

September 2019

Where are you currently employed?

I’m generally independent but I just finished a busy pilot season working for Mind Meld Arts and recently signed with Incite Management who will be representing me going forward.

 

Current Project? 

I worked on 5 pilots with Mind Meld, while also working on two ongoing series, “The Kids Are Alright” and “Virgin River.”

 

Describe Your Job. 

As music editor, I help the music tell its story and portray emotion, in a musical yet unobtrusive way, while also trying to keep the composer’s best intention. Whether it’s creating a temp track, adding in source music, editing original score written for a particular scene, or conforming old cues to a new cut, I always edit the music based on the specific needs of the picture editors and producers. We work together to ensure proper placement and musical correctness while mindful of dialogue and story. When colleagues lack the knowledge to articulate their needs in musical terms, I interpret the direction and translate it musically.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

I initially wanted to learn music recording which was why I learned Pro Tools. I loved sound editing but mainly worked in recording studios. I started working post-production in 2004 when Thomas Chan introduced me to sound design editorial. We worked on animated series as well as some non-scripted material. After that, I transitioned to dialogue editing at Bang Zoom Studios and was a sound editor at Margarita Mix Hollywood, working with Hunter Curra on animated series and non-scripted shows.

 

Who gave you your first break?

Jenny Barak gave me my first real break in music editing. I got to know her and Carli Barber at Todd AO, where I worked in client services. Jenny hired me as an assistant music editor at Pitch n Sync and later as a music editor. She taught me a mathematical approach to music editing. She told me, “It’s like a fun puzzle you have to solve.”

 

What was your first union job?

At Pitch n Sync, we worked on several union shows including “Private Practice,” “Mad Men,” “Grey’s Anatomy” and a few pilots.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

“Deadwood: The Movie” was a very proud moment for me. I even cried at the end of playback because I loved the TV series from more than 10 years ago. It was a real thrill to see the music go through so many stages and ultimately hear it mixed on the dub stage instead of just watching the final product at home. And add to that the thrill of the show getting a Prime Time Emmy nomination for Outstanding Sound Editing for a Limited Series, Movie or Special, with Micha Liberman and me as music editors and assistant music editor Stephanie Gangal all part of the wonderful sound editing team.

I also feel proud about “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” It was four years of work on a fun show with great songs that got stuck in our heads for days. When we were all done with the last season it felt like a graduation. That crew was like family.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

My biggest challenge is navigating the dynamics between producers and mixers. I watch the mixers to see exactly what they’re doing and why, even when it doesn’t pertain to music. A lot of times the producer gives a note and the mixer simply plays back to hear where to address that change, and the producer, moving on to another note, is confused about hearing it played back before the mixer had a chance to correct it. I can politely step in and diffuse the situation. I pay attention to the mixers and always try to have their back.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

I looked forward to every mix day on “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” We mixed at Formosa Group which is a great facility. We worked hard but we enjoyed our time and had a bunch of laughs. We had a spotting session on Halloween once and I dressed up as a unicorn; one of my producers said it wasn’t really a costume because I look like a unicorn every day!

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I hope to continue music editing. I’ve been fortunate to work on cool shows that I enjoy so I’d love to keep doing that. Most of my work has been in television, but I hope for more opportunities to work on features. One of my favorite parts of music editing is creating temp scores and finding source cues. I’d like to expand on that skill and learn more about music supervision.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

I’m a musician. I sing and play the piano and accordion. I write songs and record them with friends. It’s my passion. I’ve sung and played in many local bands over the years, as well as singing and playing on recording sessions. I write music for myself, taking from life’s experiences and writing it all down in song form. It’s a way to process emotions; I’m not trying to “make it” as a musician, it’s a creative release for me.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

I love Jane Campion’s “The Piano” so much that I even learned how to play a lot of the songs from Michael Nyman’s score on the piano. These songs speak for Holly Hunter, who plays a mute woman who expresses herself playing the piano. Holly Hunter actually plays piano herself and that really comes across when you watch her on screen.

 

Favorite TV program(s)?  Why?

With some of the best writing on television, my favorite show is “BoJack Horseman.” It makes fun of Hollywood in a great way and also pokes fun at itself. Sometimes we take ourselves too seriously in this industry and it’s good to laugh at ourselves. Other favorite shows are “Lost,” “Breaking Bad” and “Game of Thrones.”

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

Music editor Moira Marquis has been an important mentor to me. She is a pure pleasure to work with. We’ve worked together on a few shows, including all four seasons of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” She comes up with good ideas for music, finds solutions quickly and always has the show’s best interest at heart. She taught me how to be easy-going under huge pressure and time constraints. She says, “Don’t worry, it’s not rocket surgery!”

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Learn about all the different aspects of post-production. It’s good to know what everyone’s jobs are in production. You can be great at your particular job, but if you don’t know the roles of the crew or their process and schedule, it makes you seem like less of a team player.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

Yes. I worked for a company that hired me on a union show, gave me union hours, but didn’t pay me weekly union wages. This violation went on for an entire season and my union rep gave me the courage to face it head on.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

There are a lot of people looking to get into editorial. If you can, be a mentor to someone. There aren’t many options for people trying to break into our industry and the best way people can learn is from us. I would not be where I am today without all of the people I learned from.

 

Compiled by Edward Landler       

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact davidnbruskin@gmail.com

GERALDO GUTIERREZ - RECORDIST

August 2019

Where are you currently employed?

Warner Bros. Post Production.

 

Current Project?

Recently, I worked on Annabelle Comes Home, doing the Dolby Atmos Nearfield mix and the Foreign Atmos mixes for theatrical release, and now I am doing the Nearfield mixes for Joker, starring Robert De Niro and Joaquin Phoenix, set for release in October.

 

Describe Your Job.

I am known as a Mix Technician. I am responsible for getting a project’s audio sources onto the playback machine and set them up for the mixer, and for setting up the recorder machine to create the necessary deliverables required by the client. With the expansion of Dolby Atmos, the Mix Tech has become vital to the mixing stage staying operational. The mix tech handles the Atmos technical process and allows the mixer to focus completely on the creative aspect.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

I was originally curious about music recording, but during my time in college I started learning more about audio post-production and the creative audio work that goes into TV and film. I took a course that taught me the basics of sound design, which I found very interesting, challenging, and creative. After that, I have set my foot down the audio post path and haven’t turned back.

 

Who gave you your first break?

My first job in the audio industry was cleaning audio magnetic tape and optical sound track at Chace Audio in Burbank. Thanks to my start at Chace Audio I was able to learn the history of audio during the old “Mag and Optical” days.

 

What was your first union job?

My first union job was as mix tech for the last print master for The Front Runner last year.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

While I was still building my hours to join the union, I worked with a great team on an indie feature called Dead Bullet and was both supervising sound editor and re-recording mixer. And I am super-proud that I was the re-recording mix tech for Alfonso Cuarón’s Roma. The sound, the cinematography and the set design made it special, and I was super-happy to be part of a well-established team and see the working process of a great visionary director.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

I had an issue on a mix stage where we were not ready to roll first thing in the morning. With the mixing and engineering teams and the clients all involved, there was high tension to get things started. I had to stay calm and collected to keep everything at peace with the clients. We rescheduled the work for the next day with my own guarantee that we would roll the next day and on time. After the clients left for the day, I worked into the night with engineering to resolve the issues and, the following day, we were able to roll smoothly with everyone happy. My boss appreciated how I handled the situation.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

The most fun at work was during the last day of mixing Roma. Everyone on the mix stage started making jokes, and other film references. It was great time, as the director started clowning with me and I was able to throw in a good joke or two back at him.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I hope to move up into being a re-recording mixer.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

 Hiking, going to watch movies, and attending live concerts

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

My most recent favorite movie is La La Land. I have become more and more a fan of long one-take shots. What an incredible feat it must be to rehearse the whole shot, get every production department involved and go for the best take.

 

Favorite TV program(s)?  Why?

Lost. I became fascinated with the great scope of this show — being shot on the beach, the incredible acting and the story. Watching Lost was one of the reasons I wanted to get into audio post production. The incredible sound design and mix that went into this show was what really sparked my curiosity to learn about all the roles in audio post.

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

In each year of my career I have been fortunate to have someone I could rely on to speak with for advice and guidance — from teachers at school and bosses at work to great leaders that make up the Motion Picture Sound Editors organization like Frank Morrone and Tommy McCarthy.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

A mix tech should learn about the technical and creative side of Pro Tools, the mixing console, and old and new plug ins. I would highly recommend, if you have the chance, to learn the workflow for Dolby Atmos; more and more mix techs are starting to become in demand if they have experience dealing with Dolby Atmos.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

Not yet.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

It’s a pleasure to be a part of Local 700. I look forward to meeting you if we ever cross paths.

 

Compiled by Edward Landler      

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org, and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact edlandler@roadrunner.com

MYRA LOPEZ - ANIMATION EDITOR

July 2019

Where are you currently employed?

Netflix Animation Studios.

 

Current Project?

Maya and the Three, a Netflix original animated mini-series set in Mesoamerica, which is currently set to premiere in 2020.

 

Describe Your Job.

I am currently the lead editor on Maya and the Three. I oversee the editorial team for animatics through post-production. I work creatively side by side with the show’s writer and director, Jorge Gutierrez. Together we work on everything from pacing and timing for dramatic and comedic impact to experimenting with music and sound effect styles. Additional duties include working closely with production to develop a harmonious workflow between editorial, the story team, audio departments and our overseas animation studio.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

I have always loved animation. I studied animation and illustration at Cal State University Fullerton where I received my Bachelor in Fine Arts. During my senior year in college I did an internship at Nickelodeon Animation Studios and after graduation I was hired as a production assistant at Nickelodeon. A few months into the job, the post-production team at the studio needed assistance and I transferred into the post-production department. I remained there for 3½ years doing post on various Nickelodeon series. I was a post-production assistant, post-production coordinator and even supervised a few shorts and pilots. It was during this time that I became interested in editing and decided to go back to school part-time to become an editor.

 

Who gave you your first break?

I was about 3 months into my editing courses when one of the line producers I was working with, Miken Wong, offered me an editing job. I would have to work full-time as an editor and go part-time to school on nights and weekends. It was challenging and exhausting but she knew I could do it. Miken took a huge chance on me, for which I am forever grateful.

 

What was your first union job?

My first union job was at DreamWorks Animation Television on The Adventures of Puss in Boots.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

Nickelodeon’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles — I was one of the editors for Seasons 1 and 2. This series was the first action series I edited. I learned a lot from the series show runner about story and cutting action. The knowledge I gained from working on this project has been essential in my career and I’ve been able to apply it to other projects. I was also able to cut the first few Comic-Con trailers for the series as well, which was new and exciting for me and a lot of fun.

Maya and the Three — the mini-series I’m currently working on. Growing up, I always dreamt of seeing a Latina heroine on TV or in the movies and now I’m working on a mini-series where the main character is a Mesoamerican heroine. Although it’ll be a year or so before its release, I feel incredibly proud and lucky to be involved in this project and I’m excited for everyone to see it.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

There is so much footage and audio coming in almost daily that at times it is difficult to keep track of where everything is. Something that has been helpful is keeping a work diary. Every day I jot down what the editorial team worked on and what still needs to get done. This way there is little room for anything to get missed.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

I was hired as an editor at DreamWorks Animation TV a few months after it had been established. Those first few months at the company were slow for the editors as productions ramped up. All of editorial had offices in the same hallway and this meant we all went on adventures together. We enjoyed many long lunches, daily tea times, food challenges, lots of birthday celebrations and many YouTube videos. It was awesome; if only it lasted forever.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I hope to be editing animated features.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

I enjoy photography, playing my accordion and watching tons of Turner Classic Movies. I feel that I am constantly learning something new with all of these activities.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

The Nightmare Before Christmas and Sunset Boulevard are my favorites. The Nightmare Before Christmas is visually stunning and was a huge inspiration for wanting to study animation. Sunset Boulevard was one of the first classic films I watched that started me on a path watching and studying more classic films.

 

Favorite TV program(s)?  Why?

There are so many I love. A few that stand out to me are AnimaniacsTiny Toon AdventuresThe OfficeMad MenBreaking BadThe Handmaid’s Tale and The LeftoversAnimaniacs and Tiny Toon Adventures were cartoon series I watched as a kid that inspired me to want to draw and learn the art of animation. The OfficeMad MenBreaking BadThe Handmaid’s Tale and The Leftovers follow some complicated characters that I always find myself rooting for.

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

When I started my career in editing at Nickelodeon Animation Studios, I worked with Jeff Adams. He was my industry mentor.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Take into consideration what you are making: Is it an action show? Is it a comedy or drama series? And watch television shows or films that relate to what you are working on so that you can learn about pacing and timing. Sound is important as well. In animatics we use temp sound effects and music and it’s important to have the right sounds to help convey the story. Studying all these things will make you a better editor.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

When I started working at DreamWorks Animation Television, the content I was working on was for streaming and I was not able to join the roster. The ‘New Media’ roster was formed instead and I was placed on that. None of the hours I accumulated at Nickelodeon working as an editor could be counted towards joining the normal roster because my title at Nickelodeon was “Supervising Picture Editor” and my title at DreamWorks was “Avid Editor.” I contacted the Guild and they negotiated for the editors at DreamWorks Animation Television to join the normal roster after 6 months of employment there.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

If you are in a position where you feel you are not growing, do something about it. Make your own path. There are tons of opportunities out there in this constantly evolving industry where you can make a place for yourself.

 

Compiled by Edward Landler      

 

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org, and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact edlandler@roadrunner.com.

MARY CROWLEY - TECHNICAL DIRECTOR

June 2019

Where are you currently employed?

I work freelance.  

 

Current Project?

The Rachael Ray Show, the talk and lifestyle show. We are going into Season 14 this fall, which will be my ninth season with the show.

 

Describe Your Job.

I always tell people that I am an “instantaneous editor.” I edit the show as it happens. My day-to-day responsibilities include keeping the switcher up to date and cleaned out, building effects for the show and switching the show. During the show, I am cutting cameras, running effects and feeding monitors.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

I first became interested in switching when I was in college.

 

Who gave you your first break?

Kim Southwick! Kim was the production manager at KIDK-TV 3, the local CBS news affiliate in Idaho Falls, Idaho. When I was 15, he hired me as a camera operator for what was both my first job and my first TV job. I was so lucky to work in such a small market. While in high school, I was a camera operator, as well as stage manager, prompter operator and character generator (the station had a vidi-font machine — so old!). I was also the weekend photographer and writer for the evening news.

 

What was your first union job?

Rachael Ray was my first union gig.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

I have a lot of projects that I’ve been proud to be a part of. I am very proud to work on Rachael. We put out a beautiful product and I work with a fantastic crew. Over the last couple of years, I have had to opportunity to work on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and Sesame Street. All these shows require completely different skill sets from me, but they are all final products that I am super proud of.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

Truck work is probably the most challenging. You roll into a completely unbuilt show and you have a day or less to build every effect you need and to make sure that it will work effectively enough that your split-second decisions don’t hinder the flow of the show. If you don’t have a good truck engineer, it can be a very intensive build. It’s fun — like putting together a puzzle.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

I got to switch a show where British performance artist Millie Brown vomited paint all over Lady Gaga. It was part of a performance that Lady Gaga was doing at the 2014 South by Southwest (SXSW) Festival in Austin that Fuse.tv aired on the Internet. An hour before airtime, someone ran into the truck, told us, “The second song is where she will throw up,” and then left. None of us knew what that meant, until the second song started. It was an adventure. Really, even the worst show can be fun if you have a good crew.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I would love it if Rachael was in its 18th season in five years. It’s a great work environment.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

I love fermentation — getting my hands in the dirt and bringing life into a garden, or anything that I can use to express my creativity. That includes painting, music and crafting with my kids.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

The Philadelphia Story, especially for the banter between Katherine Hepburn and Jimmy Stewart.

 

Favorite TV program(s)? Why?

I can’t say I have a favorite, but I just binged The Umbrella Academy and looooved it. It is so purposeful with its cinematography and editing. I enjoyed it for the story and its production values.

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

Jon Pretnar and Mike Ser are probably the best technical directors I’ve ever worked with. They both are never-ending wells of information and creativity.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Do it as much as possible. It won’t matter how much you learn about the switcher if you don’t have the opportunity to get your chops. So much of what you do during the show is muscle memory and it’s important to build.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

Actually, no. I haven’t tapped into the Guild for assistance yet.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

We are on the crossroads of creativity and technology. How lucky are we?!!

 

Compiled by Edward Landler      

AMANDA NELLIGAN - STORY ANALYST

May 2019

Where are you currently employed?

MGM Studios.

 

Current Project?

Anything MGM gives me! Whatever is in front of me is my top priority.

 

Describe Your Job.

Definitely a desk job! I’m at my computer all day. I read scripts submitted for consideration, providing a synopsis and my analysis of whether they are a good bet for the studio — the pros and cons of premise, character, storyline, dialogue, etc. I also do in-depth notes on our in-house projects, assessing the strengths and weaknesses of the current script, with a focus on how to move forward with subsequent drafts.

The best part is a monthly Monday lunch meeting at the studio with all the creative executives, to discuss the status of their project slate. It’s a great opportunity to check in, get their feedback and feel a part of the bigger picture. The hard part is the isolation — although I’m so busy I barely notice.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

I always loved movies, but attended Brown University, planning to go to med school. There I got involved with, and became president of, the Brown Film Society, which included other students who left college to make it in the movies in Los Angeles. I followed them and worked as an assistant to a literary agent, then as a creative executive at Disney/Touchstone, and as a vice president of development for Mark Johnson and Barry Levinson. I really like working with writers and working on story.

I left the business to get a masters degree in clinical psychology, but missed film. My husband’s a manager and I would give his clients notes. One client said I should start my own business, so I did! In 2011, I started ScriptGal.com, my own screenplay consultation and analysis business.

 

Who gave you your first break?

Literary agent Geoffrey Sanford, who hired an inexperienced college graduate to work in his office. More recently, my college friend Holly Sklar, who has been a story analyst for Warner Bros. for decades, alerted me to the MGM job.

 

What was your first union job?

My job at MGM is my very first as a union story analyst.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

I was an associate producer on a movie called Sniper. Not a perfect film, but I worked for the producer, so I was there from development through production and, then, through post-production. I learned how to cut and splice actual film. It was an amazing experience that I will always be grateful for.

I started my current job in February, so it’s completely new! I love being able to apply my years of film expertise to MGM’s current projects. For example, the studio had a new project come in and the first draft wasn’t great. It was unnerving to give them bad news, but they agreed completely. My opinions, and years of thoughtful consideration and analysis of film, really pay off.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

Proofreading is really hard. I’m trying to figure out a more foolproof way of not making dumb mistakes, mostly on the coverage. Another issue is time. I probably take more time with sentence structure and word flow than is needed, and MGM is on the high end in terms of requirements, 10 scripts per week, while other studios only ask for eight.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

Definitely the MGM lunch meetings. I love going into the offices and hanging out with all those Oscars. The execs are super smart, super nice and chic, plus that’s a reason to put on some lipstick and heels! I’ve also read some really fun books submitted to MGM that I wouldn’t have read otherwise.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I would still like to be at MGM if the studio will have me. I find a lot of interesting projects are happening on “television” — meaning HBO, Showtime, Netflix, Amazon, Hulu… I hope MGM acquires a long-form outlet.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

Biking, hiking, reading, New York Times crosswords, cooking, baking. My husband and I met in Los Angeles but discovered we grew up two towns away from each other in Massachusetts. We go to Cape Cod every June; it’s like going back in time to childhood. Now we have a newly rescued dog, a husky named Jake.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

All of them?! The GodfatherThe Philadelphia StoryHome for the HolidaysIn the LoopMarathon ManAlien. Movies have shaped my entire life. I saw Jaws as a kid, then went to Martha’s Vineyard with my family and toured where the shark was. E.T. and Close Encounters spoke directly to me as a nerdy, awkward kid. I watched The Dirty Dozen and The Great Escape at my father’s knee, along with the first and second Dirty Harrys.

I like movies that achieve their objective, I don’t care how small; in fact, I applaud restraint. I love movies that have a clear filmmaker behind the camera. I love everything the Coen Brothers do. I love Tarantino — all of his films. I was gobsmacked to read he has a 10-movie plan and then he’ll be done. I hope not. I don’t like message movies. In terms of fun popcorn movies, I have watched Game Night a lot recently. It seems like a simple comedy but the themes and the film techniques are much deeper.

 

Favorite TV program(s)?  Why?

The Wire was amazing, except for Season 2. I grew up on M*A*S*H; it has yet to be surpassed in all of television; Hill Street Blues, as well. My husband and I were with everyone in terms of The Sopranos. I liked Dexter. I’m a huge fan of Better Things and think Pam Adlon has done better without Louis C.K. I love the dry archness of Veep. I never got into Game of Thrones, although I tried three times! I love all British crime/detective series.

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

No! I would love to have one.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Be prepared to work long hours alone. For some people the stay-at-home aspect is great. It certainly works for me. But, be forewarned, this is an intensive, focused job with little feedback. You need to be confident in your own opinions. And it’s great to have dog to walk to break up the day!

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

Yes. MGM only gives its employees a half-day off on Good Friday, but the Guild guarantees a full day off for that holiday. I consulted with my field rep, who confirmed that indeed I and the one other story analyst at MGM get the whole day off. I pointed that out to my MGM studio liaison and she concurred. She didn’t know, and it was satisfying to educate her about our guidelines.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

I’m really new, but I’m so happy to be a part of this group. I have been alone and freelance for so long. Being part of a greater whole was literally inconceivable before February of this year. But here I am. I’m so thankful and ready to be part of this amazing community.

 

Compiled by Edward Landler        

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org, and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact edlandler@roadrunner.com

LARRY SEXTON - PICTURE EDITOR

April 2019

Where are you currently employed?

I currently work at the new Tyler Perry Studios (TPS) complex in Atlanta. A Madea Family Funeral was released in March. 

 

Current Project?

A yet-to-be-named movie project.

 

Describe Your Job.

As editor, many times I work directly with Perry on his movie projects. I am allowed the freedom to do the first cut, and then he will sit with me and go over it. I have a fun job, but the chance to work with the creative genius of Tyler Perry is simply an amazing experience. When not working on movies, I work on TPS’ television dramas, The Haves and the Haves Nots and If Loving You Is Wrong, both on the OWN Network.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

I always loved the challenge of creating emotion, blending photography and telling stories within a single image. With a college degree in photojournalism and art, I started photography freelancing with the Minnesota North Stars (now Dallas Stars) pro hockey team. Today, these images are in the permanent photography collection at the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto.

 

I began editing and telling stories with film in news and production at a rural Minnesota TV station. I was able to shoot and process my own film, and edit and write the story. I enjoyed the rush of live news and telling the viewer what I had witnessed through film, copy and creativity.

 

Moving to Chicago, I started in post with Columbia Pictures Duplication as a tape operator. Over the years I’ve been a live sports technical director, color assistant, assistant editor, online editor, and online effects editor, and ended up as the first nonlinear tape-based editor in Chicago working on the Montage Picture Processor, one of the NLEs.

 

Who gave you your first break?

I’ve had many “first breaks,” starting with Len Perlman, who hired me from Columbia to work at Editel in Chicago. There, I worked with and learned from some of the most talented editors I’ve ever met. For my first break in TV show business, I thank Harpo Productions’ Dave Logan who hired me to work on The Oprah Winfrey Show. I thank The View‘s Candi Carter, producer Leslie Grisanti and Tyler Perry Studios senior vice president Will Areu for my position at TPS. For my break into movies, I thank Tyler Perry who personally believed in me to edit his movies.

 

What was your first union job?

Picture Editor on the TV series If Loving You Is Wrong at Tyler Perry Studios.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

My favorite video segment for The Oprah Show is the background piece I did on Stevie Nicks and Fleetwood Mac; the time pressures we worked under made it even more rewarding. Other notables would be Oprah’s Legends Ball doc for ABC, the NCAA Final Four open for CBS, and Cicely Tyson’s biography piece for the Kennedy Center Honors on CBS. Also, Boo! A Madea Halloween was not only a fun project, but the opportunity to experience the energy of audience laughter was unique — plus two weeks topping the box office made it really special.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

In Australia, U2’s Bono was the opening guest on The Oprah Show at the Sydney Opera House, and I was assigned the setup piece for the band. The night before the show, U2 recorded the song “Beautiful Day” at a concert, which I would edit with backstage interviews to make a two-minute segment. I needed to time the song so that at 1:45, while Oprah waited on stage, Bono would walk through the curtains to greet her there, singing the chorus with the video.

 

The segment was needed in the truck for the live show no later than 7:00 a.m. I was ready to go at 3:00 a.m., but the elements from the shoot didn’t arrive until after 4:00 a.m.

 

Bono ad-libbed lyrics with Oprah’s name in some verses; I needed to keep those verses but keep one of U2’s most popular songs from sounding edited and still hit the 1:45 timing mark. At one point, I almost took the song out of Avid and into Pro Tools so I could do sub-frame editing, but I finally got it to time and was able to re-edit some sections to blend by using riffs from other parts of the song to make the transition. I kept trying pieces over and over again until it worked…perfectly. I delivered the finished segment at 6:50 a.m. —10 minutes to spare.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

Working The Oprah Oscar Special telecasts was lots of fun. But the most fun was editing Bono and U2 for the Oprah live segment and seeing it play on the screens by the Sydney Opera House with Bono coming through the curtain to the music I edited, with 12,000 fans cheering. It was a real rush.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

Five years in this business is a long time. I enjoy finding new ways to tell stories that help others. Maybe a shift towards documentary filmmaking.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

I escape to the quiet of the country or to the sounds of waves at the beach. I talk to and learn from people with different backgrounds and careers. I enjoy photography and doing art projects that encompass photography.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

Hands down, Caddyshack, an all-time classic. I’m kidding about the classic part, but when I started with Columbia Pictures, I was a VHS tape duplicator and Caddyshack was the movie I duplicated most often. I have seen it over 100 times and know most of the script lines. I’ve got that goin’ for me, which is nice.

 

Favorite TV program(s)?  Why?

BloodlineSeason 1 on Netflix, and Amazon’s GoliathSeason 1. I enjoy their creative show opens and the shows themselves have a good storyline blended with good cinematography and solid editing, a pleasure to watch. To relax, I get good laughs from older shows like SeinfeldEverybody Loves Raymond or Curb Your Enthusiasm. 

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

Tom Pyers, editor on Oprah’s recent After Neverland TV show, and Big Shoulders Digital Video Productions owner Frank Hanes in Chicago. We all need a peer in the business who can be honest with us, to bounce ideas off. Both Tom and Frank have been that for me, and we’ve also alerted each other to opportunities.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Watch a lot of different types of television shows and movies. Refer to print ads and design for ideas and come up with ways to incorporate those ideas into moving images. Have a solid core expertise, then expand your knowledge to offer clients other abilities. We can no longer be one-dimensional. We are in a creative, customer service business and are only as good as our last jobs. Put your client at ease. Always be positive! My favorite saying is, “How can I make your day better?” When you put others first, somehow everything seems to work out for the best.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

No. I’ve been fortunate, I guess.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

The industry is changing quickly, with lots of opportunities to go around. Network with others as much as you can. I don’t think there’s been a better time to be in the business.

 

Compiled by Edward Landler        

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org, and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact edlandler@roadrunner.com.

RICK OWENS - FOLEY ARTIST

March 2019

Where are you currently employed?

I’m pretty much a freelance Foley artist. I do work with Sony Pictures, been seen around Warner Bros., and spent time with a crew at Universal and on a few smaller independent stages. Currently, I work with mixer Darrin Mann at IMN Creative, a boutique post house. It’s a great group with some exciting projects on the horizon.

 

Current Project?

At IMN, I’ve been working on Deadly Class airing on SyFy Network. It’s a very cool project and really requires a lot of creative and detailed Foley. Darrin and I have completed seven episodes so far. After Deadly Class, I go back to Sony for the feature Spider-Man: Far From Home.

 

Describe Your Job.

As a Foley artist creating sound effects on a sound stage, I am responsible for bringing a natural human element to a sound track by re-creating the movements of characters as seen on screen: footsteps, clothes, props, etc. I used to jokingly say I was emotionally attached to the characters I was walking, but the reality is that emotions can be translated through Foley. As a sound effects artist, I also provide details in a car crash, a fist fight, a person escaping the rubble from a blown-out building, Spider-man’s webs and so on. Some years ago, John Roesch told me that anything could be Foley, and I believe that to be true.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

My first job involving Foley was at a small, independent sound house in the early ‘90s. Our crew of three would do a complete post sound package in five or six weeks — one week of simultaneous dialogue and sound effects editing, about a week to record and cut ADR, a week or less to shoot Foley, and a week or more of final dub. I gravitated toward Foley. I really enjoyed the physical part of the job and the creativity and performance it demanded.

 

Who gave you your first break? 

My dad, Larry Owens, who was a recording engineer in the ‘70s and ‘80s, learned dialogue editing and post sound from sound editor Norval Crutcher in the late ‘80s. As a kid, I was my dad’s assistant at the recording studios where he worked. This background has been super helpful in my Foley career because I learned about the other side of the glass technically. I like to say dad gave me my first job, but since then I got them all on my own.

 

What was your first union job?

My first union job was at Warner’s new Underground Foley Stage in 2009. My partner then was Monette Holderer, along with mixer Trevor Sperry. We were a tight-knit crew and developed our own workflow of categorizing Foley. We would record props in certain passes — a hands pass, an office pass (papers, books, writing, etc.), a food and drink pass, a chair pass, body falls, and then lump all the cool creative stuff into its own pass. Sadly, Mo passed away a few years ago.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

They say you’re only as good as your last project and the work we are doing on Deadly Class is fantastic. In many Foley moments, I put a lot of sparkle and detail on what could be construed as a simple sound. My first really big film credit was the WWII film Fury. We created all the interior movements of a Sherman Tank: loading the guns, adjusting the sights, creating creaks and squeaks and even simple sounds of the seats in the tank. The supervisor was intent on creating a period-accurate film, and Foley helped achieve that objective.

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

The 2016 fantasy adventure Warcraft. When we began the project, much of it was still motion-capture guys in little gray jumpsuits. We went beyond that to create an environment of characters that would match what would ultimately be the sound of giant Orcs and their movements.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

I have fun most days except when the pressure is on to finish too much work in too short of time. Even then, it’s still fun. How many people get to do what we do? Some of the fun moments are getting to create an effect and using multiple layers. We’ll spend time to get it just right, usually with a low-end bass channel and build up sonically from there. Perhaps the most fun I have is during playback when we review our work for the day. Playback almost always brings a smile to my face — the fruits of the labor type of thing.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

My five-year goal would be to continue working with like-minded professionals and remain steady at it. Though doing the big features is obviously a thrill, staying consistent is important.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

I’ve been married for 10 years and it is an amazing experience watching and helping my eight-year-old daughter grow up. She is much smarter than I. I’m also kind of a gear head. I have a beautiful 1963 Ford Falcon that has been heavily modified.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

One of my favorite movies is Forrest Gump. I always relate to the comings and goings of certain characters in the movie. The most touching moment is when Lieutenant Dan comes back and is sitting on the dock…and later when Dan makes peace with his creator. Another favorite is Saving Private Ryan. D-Day is still one of the most realistic pieces of filmmaking in history. Everything about that scene seems perfect to me.

 

Favorite TV program(s)?  Why?

I tend to watch non-scripted TV. I like shows about cooking and building cars. I’ve worked on so much scripted TV, it’s nice to get lost in something without so much of a story.

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

My first Foley mentor was Paul Holzborn, a great Foley artist. I did my first major movie with him, John Carpenter’s Vampires in 1998. Years later, the one and only Gary Hecker, one of the best Foley artists in the business, invited me to work with him and he blew open the world of Foley for me. I learned that just about anything could be created on a Foley stage. We did Deepwater Horizon in 2016. We had the opportunity to create the most massive and complex sounds for the Deepwater Oil rig both before and after its catastrophic explosion.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Listen to a lot of movies and TV shows. Listen to how they sound, what creative choices are made for the mix, where Foley is featured and where music and effects are featured. Learn about sound. I’ve met younger Foley artists who just want to do Foley and get paid, but don’t really understand a lot about film or TV sound and where Foley fits in. Find somebody willing to train you; those people are out there. But for me, there was a certain amount of humility to ask for guidance from someone more experienced.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

Get involved and have your voice heard. If a certain situation or working condition doesn’t seem right, reach out and help be part of the change.

 

Compiled by Edward Landler 

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org, and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact edlandler@roadrunner.com.

CRAIG LO GIUDICE - ASSISTANT SOUND EDITOR

February 2019

Where are you currently employed?

I work at Sound Lounge Film + Television, an audio post-production company in New York City.

 

Current Project?

Season Three of High Maintenance for HBO.

 

Describe Your Job.

On our current project, I am coordinating files between all of the video editors, the audio editors (dialogue, ADR, Foley and sound design), the ADR engineer and the re-recording mixer. We also have another engineer working on projects besides High Maintenance and I help him with files and other things he needs assistance with, such as dialogue editing and cutting backgrounds. I also help with the ADR stage, elements and scripts, and have started to get into doing some records as well.

 

How did you first become interested in this line of work?

I discovered audio post while in school for audio engineering. Having always loved film (and having almost zero musical talent), it seemed like a perfect fit artistically and, to be honest, a good way to make a living. I knew some people in advertising who helped steer me toward the commercial world of audio post-production.

 

Who gave you your first break?

I worked briefly at a studio called Burst, which mixed mostly promo spots, before I was hired at Sound Lounge about 12 years ago. I worked there as an assistant engineer until I moved over to the film and television department — and joined the union — about 18 months ago. I’ve never been more satisfied with work and feel I finally have a career and not just a job.

 

What was your first union job?

My first union job was as a machine room operator for Season Two of High Maintenance.

 

Which of your credits or projects have made you the most proud and why?

I would have to say High Maintenance. Besides it being the first union job I’ve been on so far, it’s an extremely well-done show and I think it really stands out in the somewhat crowded realm of scripted television. As an assistant, I don’t have much creative input, but every job begins and ends with the assistants. That being said, taking care of a lot of the little details and making sure everyone involved has everything they may need frees them up to concentrate on the creative side and really craft a quality finished product

 

What was your biggest challenge in your job (or on a particular project) and how did you overcome/solve it?

After having worked in commercials for so long, the biggest challenge has been adapting to the very different workflow that long-form requires. Even after being in audio post for as long as I have, there is always something new to learn or something to improve upon.

 

What was the most fun you’ve had at work?

It’s always a lot of fun to host a “movie night” on the stage, have a few drinks and mock an awesomely bad film, getting some co-workers to watch an insane Japanese horror flick or just a good old John Carpenter/Kurt Russell double feature.

 

Jobwise, what do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I hope to be doing more editing, more mixing and more ADR.

 

What are your outside activities, hobbies, passions?

Cooking and bread baking have always been a passion. I also enjoy hiking all over the beautiful state of New York with my wife and our dogs.

 

Favorite movie(s)? Why?

I’d have a hard time naming a favorite film in any particular genre, never mind an all-time favorite film. This is something that changes with age or even the seasons.

 

Favorite TV program(s)?  Why?

I’m currently working through Game of Thrones for the second time and, if you count multiple viewings of an entire series, I’d also have to say Parks and RecreationBreaking Bad is definitely up there, and I have to admit the wife and I have been through Gilmore Girls multiple times, as well as Fringe and Cheers. I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with The X Files and more recently, as a horror fan, I’ve also loved Ash vs Evil Dead. Of course, the list goes on and on… Too many shows, too little time.

 

Do you have an industry mentor?

Working on the commercial side at Sound Lounge, it would be mixer Glenn Landrum, who taught me the basics. After I started work on long-form projects and joined the union, it was sound editor Steve “Major” Giammaria who has helped me immensely in making the transition from commercials to film and television.

 

What advice would you offer to someone interested in pursuing your line of work?

Work hard honing your craft, and learn as much as you can from everyone with whom you work.

 

Was there ever a circumstance when you had to rely on the Guild for help or assistance?

Luckily, I have not yet run into any instances where I’ve really needed to take advantage of much of what the Guild has to offer in the way of help or assistance.

 

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fellow Guild members, some words of encouragement?

Keep up the fantastic work!

 

Compiled by Edward Landler      

Editor’s Note: To recommend a member (including yourself) to be featured on CineMontage.org, and the home page of the Editors Guild website, please contact edlandler@roadrunner.com.

Interested in Being Featured?

Tomm Carroll
Publications Director
323.876.4770, ext. 222
tcarroll@editorsguild.com