When Optimizer students Nick Towle and Fabian Corrado originally came to me, neither one of them knew each other. But they both knew they were tired of the jobs they had, they felt stuck after trying for years to make a seemingly impossible career change, and they were ready to do anything to get on the right path.
Learn how Mexican-American editor Marcella Garcia overcame her limiting beliefs (and lack of experience in long form) to break into the world of scripted television.
In part 2 of this conversation recent college graduate Austin Coburn interviews me about how he can develop the proper habits early in his career to maintain work-life balance and avoid burnout.
In part 1 of this conversation I interview graduate-to-be Austin Coburn about what it really takes to break into and make it in the entertainment industry (and then in part 2 he interviews me!).
Learn from award winning TV editor Scott Powell, ACE (24, The Chi, The Orville) the importance of using humility to build relationships and climb the career ladder to the top.
Learn how writer/director Sam Lavin made the transition from 2nd to 1st AD, and how she’s developed laser-sharp focus to make sure her next step is landing in the director’s chair.
Award-winning editor Michelle Tesoro discusses how to strategically apply the chess mentality to take the right steps in your career (instead of jumping from one gig to the next playing a game of checkers).
Paul Leonard is one of those rare species of producers that has both editors and show runners alike wanting to work with him again and again. In today’s conversation Paul candidly shares his thoughts on what gets editors and AE’s hired, and what qualities he likes his editors to possess in the bay. He combines a winning charm with a no BS approach that has earned him the well-deserved reputation for making great shows while also keeping his team happy and sane. Paul has worked in television post production for 23 years and is best known for Co-producing Battlestar Galactica which earned 15 Emmy nominations (with three collective wins). He recently wrapped up a job at Marvel where he was one of the vice presidents of TV Post Production before deciding to go back to freelance producing.
When it comes to working the brutal hours that have become the norm in entertainment, negotiating for better pay, and fighting to make changes in industry standards, most of us feel helpless (and hopeless) about where to even begin. What if we were paid for the value we bring to a project rather than the number of hours we clock in each day? Today’s guest Scott Jacobs, a longtime editor, AE, and MPEG board member, tackles this question with me. If you’re interested in having a little bit more ammunition to advocate for a job that is more focused on value than hours, and most importantly working smarter (and not harder), my conversation with Scott is a must-listen.
ACE Editor Steven Lang has helped countless numbers of his assistants get into the editing chair and move on to successful careers. In this part two is Steve’s philosophy on mentoring his assistants, how he approaches his editor’s cuts, and his best advice for making the transition from assistant to editor. We also dive into Steve’s work habits, his lifestyle choices, and how he has learned to balance his intense focus abilities to avoid wreaking havoc on his health and relationships.
Many of the students in my coaching & mentorship program come to me hoping to make a transition in their career where they have the skills already but they don’t have the specific experience. I was in that very same position when I landed my dream job editing Burn Notice. Here to lend a unique perspective to my “Burn Notice story” is ACE Editor Steve Lang, the catalyst for getting that job. Steve has cut over 120 hours of television in the past 24 years and worked on such shows as The Practice, The Gifted, Preacher, Rectify, and Manifest, to name just a select few. He took an unusual path to becoming an editor having held every role in the post-production department at one point or another. This experience gives him a well-rounded point of view of hiring editors and assistants and best practices for advancing your career…without getting pigeonholed. In this first part, you’ll hear how I got the job on Burn Notice from Steve’s perspective while also hearing the skills vs experience argument from someone on the hiring side.
In this article I’d like to take a much deeper dive down the rabbit hole to help you better understand the seven simple (not to be confused with easy) steps that can help you turn a cold contact into a connection, then a relationship, and potentially even your ideal mentor.
Kabir Ahktar, ACE feels very strongly that:
“It’s really important to stay networking…However much you’re doing, it’s probably not enough.”
Author’s Note: The following is an article I originally wrote for the site Filmeditingpro.com titled “The Editor’s Guide To Networking (Especially If You Can’t Network)” …
Director, editor, and mentor Susan Vaill, ACE discuss with Zack Arnold, ACE the many pitfalls, politics, and unanswered questions that must be answered once a new editor has made the transition from being an assistant.
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