[Podcast] Ep 54: Behind the Empire Editorial Workflow

In this episode I do a deep dive with my assistant Natalie Boschan into every vital step of our editorial workflow at Empire from day one until delivery of a locked episode. We discuss in detail the systems we’ve developed to become a more efficient and productive team over the years. Although we use Avid at Empire, the organizational systems and templates we’ve created can be applied to any NLE workflow in scripted, reality, documentary, or otherwise.

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Topics of Conversation:

  • How we set up our projects before every new episode
  • How to spend more of your time being creative
  • The foundation of being efficient  – media management and organization!
  • Why folder structure in your NLE is important
  • How to eliminate errors like working on the wrong sequence, version etc.
  • Why you should build an elements project
  • Ritualizing behaviors and time management
  • Google Drive and why it’s so easy to use in a post workflow, especially if you want to go paperless
  • How Trello can REVOLUTIONIZE your workflow for scripted and documentary
  • Eliminating human error with checklists in Trello
  • How making templates can eliminate “brain drain” and “time sucks”
  • Mistakes happen–make sure you don’t make the same mistake twice!
  • Build the checklist that works for you
  • Organizing email with Trello
  • How being organized and efficient will help you get more jobs!

Useful Links:


Ep 47 – Master Trainer Maxim Jago on Being a More Efficient Editor


Show Credits:

This episode was edited by Curtis Fritsch, the show notes were prepared by Natalie Boschan, and this show is executive produced by Kanen Flowers. We are a member of the THAT STUDIO podcast network.

The music in the opening and closing of the show is courtesy of Dorian Cheah from his brilliant album ARA.


Zack Arnold (ACE) is an award-winning Hollywood film editor (Cobra Kai, Empire, Burn Notice, Unsolved, Glee), a documentary director, father of 2, and the creator of the Optimize Yourself program. Zack helps ambitious creative professionals and entrepreneurs overcome procrastination, depression, and creative burnout so they can get sh*t done and achieve the most meaningful goals in their lives...without sacrificing their sanity in the process. If you’re interested in learning how to better manage your time, your energy, and develop ninja-like focus, download Zack’s “Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Your Creativity (And Avoiding Burnout).”