“A typical film has 1,300 cuts.” Every cut has an impact on the flow, rhythm, and story. Every cut has the potential to make or break the film. A thousand three hundred pieces to an invisible puzzle…with infinite possibilities. None of them are correct or incorrect.” That is the essence of what a Film & Video Editor does in order to produce a finished product that entertains or informs an audience.
Similar Job Titles
- Film Editor
- Video Editor
- Movie Editor
Typical Job Responsibilities
What do Film & Video Editors do?
A Film & Video Editor would typically need to:
- Receive a short outline of footage, as well as a shot list, script, or screenplay.
- Assemble all raw material, with camera shots recorded or transferred to videotape in preparation for computer input.
- Input unedited rushes and sounds; synchronize and save them to the computer as files.
- Work in an editing room or studio with the director to obtain the intended output and meet the director’s criteria.
- Collaborate with music supervisors to select background music for specific moments to improve their dramatic effect.
- Examine the sequences, reorganize them, and decide which will be left on the cutting room floor.
- Manipulate raw camera video, dialogue, sound effects, graphics, and special effects; edit clips using nonlinear digital editing tools.
- Rearrange and adjust the content to ensure the film or video runs smoothly and logically.
- Create edit decision lists to match the edge numbers; scan work prints to organize the scenes and transitions that comprise a film.
- Edit footage for television commercials, station identification, and public service announcements.
- Examine films for deterioration, discard defective or obsolete cassettes, and establish accurate cutting for the final phases.
- Work on feature films, television shows, music videos, corporate training videos, and commercials.
Standard Work Environment
Film and video editors usually work long hours in studios or offices alongside producers and directors. The watchwords for your clothing code should be casual, clean, and comfortable.
Work hours vary based on the production. Some businesses accept standard office hours, but if you are working on a television or feature film project, you should expect a 50-hour weekly.
If editing studios are rented at night, shift labour may be required. Long hours and extra would be required to meet deadlines. A freelance Film & Video Editor’s work schedule may be relatively flexible.
Editors are employed by broadcast and film firms, but they all hire freelancers on a regular basis. Some post-production firms and larger independent firms offer long-term contracts and hire a few in-house Film & Video Editors.
Film & Video Editors are generally employed by:
- Animation & Broadcast Companies
- Film Companies
- Independent Production Companies
- Post-Production Companies
- Video & Computer Games Companies
Unions / Professional Organizations
Union membership provides you with important training and social networking opportunities, as well as critical safeguards granted by union contracts. Professional groups and organizations are essential for Film and Video Editors who want to further their professional growth or interact with other professionals in their industry or trade. Membership in one or more of these organizations looks great on your resume and helps to strengthen your credentials and qualifications.
- Diplomacy is needed in conflicts between directors and producers
- Eyesight affected by long hours of work in dark rooms and various other health problems caused by long hours sitting down
- Irregular and inconsistent work hours in an extremely competitive field
Suggested Work Experience
Work experience in several sectors of media production, as well as a showreel demonstrating evidence of work on film, video production, and post-production, can offer you a professional advantage. Participating in a student filmmaking association or establishing your own film company at university will provide you with valuable hands-on experience as a Film & Video Editor.
Internships with seasoned experts provide students with a valuable opportunity to learn skills such as editing procedures relevant to a film or television genre. Experience as an apprentice editor or editing room assistant will be invaluable in learning the subtleties of video editing.
There is no predetermined academic path to becoming a Film and Video Editor. Nonetheless, a degree in a relevant area, such as communication and media studies, visual art, graphic design, multimedia, photography, cinema, or television, will assist potential candidates in gaining considerable knowledge and abilities in the sector.
Experience and talents are the cornerstones that impress prospective employers and clients. Computer literacy is required since editing software programs such as Avid, Final Cut Pro, and Montage Express must be examined, learned, and used. A major in cinematography will help Film & Video Editors understand how to operate camera equipment. You can attend independent film schools, photographic institutes, community colleges, technical schools, or regular universities.
Certifications, Licenses, and Registration
A Film & Video Editor can obtain certification in numerous editing software kinds by passing a comprehensive exam. Certification signifies expertise in specific skills or abilities, generally through job experience, training, passing an examination, or a combination of the three.
Voluntary certification from an objective, reliable, and reputable organization is frequently viewed as evidence of an individual’s drive and motivation, providing them an advantage in promotions and increases.
Projected Career Map
Typically, you will begin at a lower-paying level. After taking your first cautious steps into the field of Film & Video Editing as an assistant editor, you will advance to the full-fledged role of Film & Video Editor. If you work in-house for a large media organization, you may be able to advance to the position of Senior Editor.
Larger corporations offer well-structured career paths, with experienced in-house Film & Video Editors progressing to managerial positions. Career development for freelancers evolves from small productions to larger or more prestigious ones.
Film and video editors who have mastered many types of specialized editing software and have on-the-job experience at a TV station or on a film set should have the best opportunities.
Beneficial Professional Development
A range of short courses addresses pertinent topics such as software editing packages, post-production audio, and visual effects. On-the-job training is the most effective technique to improve your abilities. Keep up with current technologies and equipment. You may choose to broaden your talents in camera or sound work to increase your professional opportunities and have a comprehensive understanding of video production.
Attending external organization-led training courses, freelancing, and developing a portfolio are all realistic strategies to get employers’ attention. Developing excellent working ties with freelance directors, production managers, and producers who choose favourite editors for new projects is priceless.
Film and video editors must be persistent; their ‘invisible art’ is demanding. Putting together raw data from many mediums to create an engaging result necessitates a high level of imagination. Nonetheless, it is extremely fulfilling in that without it, films and television series would be a long and nonsensical jumble.
Advice from the Wise
Keep an open mind and be receptive to other people’s perspectives. You are not creating a film for yourself; you are creating it for an audience. You’re not going to get very far if no one wants to see it. So practice and be open to new ideas.