A film editor does the second writing for a film and stitches together a story for it. He is responsible for presenting the director’s vision of a movie. Certain flaws in the film’s script can be corrected at this stage. An editor has to maintain the flow and correct length of a film and ensure that it achieves a sense of pace. Being a good editor can be a great asset if one wants to be a director. Film-making is a business of not just entertaining the audience, but also keeping them engrossed. A film editor plays a major role in ensuring that the audience is kept engaged. He/she has to generate impact from the footage given by the director who always is the best judge of an editor’s work. A film editor in charge of the post-production work of a movie. If you are working on more than one project at a time, you have to be extremely creative as you may have to deal with different genres such as romance, action and comedy in one go.
“The job of a film editor is flexible and depends on the film’s release date. For instance, UTV Motion Pictures’ Barfi! was set for a September release, so the final editing work began in April. And from April till August, we worked for 16-18 hours a day,” says Akiv Ali, editor of the film.
11am: Reach the studio
11.30am: Go through the plans, proposals related to editing, and the footage of the scenes to be edited that day
Noon: Meet the director for further discussion on the film
3pm: Interact with people from other technical teams
4pm: Work on the film’s editing
2am: Call it a day
Pay scale is determined by the budget of the film, the scale of the film and one’s experience. It could range from Rs. 3 lakh and Rs. 25 lakh per project
* You should be willing to work hard and for long hours
* Film editing requires a lot of patience
* It is an extremely creative process based on individual as well as collective opinions
* You have to re-work a lot on your editing so you need to have the perseverance to deal with it and ensure a great result
A film editor should have basic knowledge of the software. What you learn at a training institute may be different from what you actually do as a film editor. You have to be a little “film literate,” your basics have to be strong and you should be able to pick up editing skills easily. A long or short-term course in film editing may be useful
Institutes and URLs
* Film and Television Institute of India, Pune
* Whistling Woods International School, Mumbai
* Satyajit Ray Film & Television Institute, Kolkata
Pros and cons
* You get to work on big projects with some of the best names in the business
* Creative satisfaction
* Mounting pressure of deadlines
Film editing is a great profession to be in if one is creatively inclined and passionate about cinema --Akiv Ali, film editor, UTV Motion Pictures’ Barfi!