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Film and Video Editor Job Description, Career as a Film and Video Editor, Salary, Employment - Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

editors television picture films

Education and Training: High school plus training

Salary: Median—$43,590 per year

Employment Outlook: Good

Definition and Nature of the Work

Film editors are an important part of the film staff and are responsible for the technical quality of a film. Editors, with the guidance of a director, edit film until it meets with the director's approval. The director tells the film editors how to rearrange the scenes that have been shot, what footage to cut, and where to insert music, sound, or optical effects. Film editors order these special effects from specialists.

Most film editors use computers or nonlinear digital editing systems to edit film. They work with copies of images called work prints to organize the scenes and transitions that make up a film. When the film is complete, the film editor will create an edit decision list, which is an outline of each shot in the film as well as its length. The list corresponds directly to the edge numbers (numbers that are listed on the edge of the work prints), which are stored on the computer. This list is sent to the negative matcher, who makes a negative of the film, which is then sent to a film lab.

Television film editors use computer software and nonlinear digital editing systems to edit film for commercials, station identification, and public service messages on television films and tapes. They also check all films that come into the television station for damage.

Film editors generally specialize in either theatrical or nontheatrical work. Theatrical film editors edit the films shown in movie theaters. Nontheatrical film editors work for television companies and companies that make educational, documentary, and industrial films. More than 75 percent of all nontheatrical editors work on television films.

Film editors are skilled technicians. They do not make any directorial decisions, such as determining the quality of acting or whether a scene fits into the movie. They must follow the orders of the director.

Education and Training Requirements

Some film editors have a college degree, but a degree is not necessary for the job. A few schools, including the University of Southern California, the University of California at Los Angeles, New York University, and the University of Miami in Florida, offer programs in filmmaking. High school and college courses in English, art, and photography are valuable for prospective film editors. However, the best training is experience. Editors need to know how to use film projectors and computer and digital editing systems. They should also have a general knowledge of cameras and digital camera technology.

Getting the Job

Most aspiring film editors intern or apprentice with assistant film editors, which allows them to make contacts and receive training until they can get a position as an assistant film editor.

Individuals interested in working as a television editor should apply directly to broadcasting stations. Smaller stations require less training than large ones do and offer more on-the-job training and opportunities for advancement.

A limited number of union apprenticeships may also be available. The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees and Moving Picture Technicians, the American Cinema Editors, or the National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians can provide more information on apprenticeship programs.

Advancement Possibilities and Employment Outlook

Assistant film editors begin by synchronizing sound and picture, ordering special effects, filing film, breaking film down into individual scenes, and, in general, assisting the film editor. Assistants may have to work many years before qualifying for the position of a full film editor. Both union and nonunion workers advance in the same manner and at just about the same rate. Very few film editors become producers or directors. Film editors are limited by their specialization.

The employment outlook for film editors is good. Once a small field with limited opportunities, film editing will expand due to the growth of cable television and the increasing number of independent film studios. Those with talent and experience will be in greatest demand and will have the best chances for employment. Large studios will also be offering competitive salaries for the top editors in the field.

Working Conditions

Film editors often work under a great deal of pressure. It is not unusual for editors to work more than twelve hours per day, especially when they have to meet a deadline. Editors use their eyes constantly and work late at night in front of computers, causing many of them to suffer from eyestrain. Since they work closely with producers and directors, they must remain alert, even-tempered, and responsive in spite of the demands placed upon them. Television editors who work on news shows must work rapidly and accurately so that their programs meet broadcast deadlines.

Where to Go for More Information

American Cinema Editors, Inc.
100 Universal City Plaza, Bldg. 2282, Rm. 190
Universal City, CA 91608
(818) 777-2900
http://www.ace-filmeditors.org

International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada
1430 Broadway, 20th Fl.
New York, NY 10018
(212) 730-1770
http://www.iatse-intl.org

National Association of Broadcast Employees and Technicians
501 Third St. NW, Ste. 880
Washington, DC 20001-2797
(202) 434-1254
http://www.nabetcwa.org

Earnings and Benefits

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, motion picture film editors earned a median annual salary of $43,590 as of 2004. Experienced and successful film editors can earn more than $90,000 per year. Film editors are employed on a picture-by-picture basis, while those who work in the television industry typically have more steady work.

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almost 4 years ago

Well, it looks like people havent commented in a LONG time. So, hi. Im working on a class project and this didnt help that much .-.

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over 4 years ago

Hi, I'm a senior in high school. I'm planning on going to college to major in Computer Science, but lately I've been thinking about video editing. I'm always curious about how they do things in movies, tv shows, even commercials and sometimes even get distracted from the show thinking about how they created it. If I add a film minor to my education, will I have an adaquate background for me to try to become a video editor?

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over 4 years ago

Final Cut Pro
Avid
EDIUS 5.50
Adobe Premiere Pro
Adobe Photoshop CS3
Adobe Illustrator CS

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almost 8 years ago

Hey.I am A junior high student[8th grde young]I plan on becoming a Film and Video Editor and go to college to become one.i also plan on gettiong my bachleors Degree.Im curently doing a Report/project on Film AND Video Editor.I wanted to ask what the hazards are for doing this job.How much education will i need.What skills should i learn?What exactly are all the Benifts?

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about 9 years ago

Hello my name is Samantha Smith although I'm still not working in a studio I am looking into this career because i found it very interesting ever since I was a freshman in high school i am planning on moving to New York In a couple of years once I have completed my training I found this information very useful to me I cant wait to start my new career!!

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almost 10 years ago

Hello,



My name is Chris Erdman and I am a freelance Film/Video Editor currently working on cable television programs in New York City. I wanted to comment on the following statement made in your Film/Video Editor Job Description:



"Film editors are skilled technicians. They do not make any directorial decisions, such as determining the quality of acting or whether a scene fits into the movie. They must follow the orders of the director."



Although this is often the case in theatrical film, in television, especially anything even remotely documentary/verite in nature (like reality television, for instance), it is far from the truth. Editors play the principal creative role in many programs that you see on television, and they have to make hundreds of creative decisions every day, from creating a music montage from scratch, to deciding what literally comes out of a characters mouth. In theatrical film, even though directors are ultimately in charge, it is also not uncommon for whole scenes to be scrapped based on an editor's sense of/recommendations regarding pace, timing, and "feel."



Editors, especially in television, are often responsible for choosing shots, music, sound fx, visual fx, and sometimes even writing narration as they essentially carve out a sculpture from a block of stone.



In short, much of what is decribed in your description is true. However, you might want to ammend it by adding that, although editors are skilled technicians who are subject to the overarching vision of the producer or director in charge, they are, just as often as not, key creative forces in the shaping of what audiences see on the small screen, and on the big one as well. Thanks.

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almost 6 years ago

I am doing a reasearch project on a career i would like to be when i am in college. I am now a Freshman in high school. Can you give me some advise of what i would do to help this career go up while at school

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almost 6 years ago

I am doing a reasearch project on a career i would like to be when i am in college. I am now a Freshman in high school. Can you give me some advise of what i would do to help this career go up while at school

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over 5 years ago

i need jobs now

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almost 6 years ago

Hello,
I am dilp kumar. i have complithed post graduate diploma in multimedia (modeling & compositing).i am frasher. i want to job thish time

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over 7 years ago

I really want to get into this field and was wondering, me being an 11th grader will it it possible for me to have a schedule that would work around my school hours?

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almost 8 years ago

Hello! i am a newly graduate of pharmacy here in the philippines. I am planning to work as an editor after. Can i ask some questions? what is the course for being an editor? how long it will take me to finish such course? which field the editor can gain more? Tv network? Movie? advertisement? :) i know its weird but working behind the scene is really my passion not dealing with drugs. thank you so much. hope you'll respond to my questions :) send it to my email. thank you...

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over 1 year ago

hey

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about 2 years ago

Nobody has commented in about two years and I am interested to get into the editing field, thankyou for the information

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about 3 years ago

WHAT ARE JOB HAZARDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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almost 6 years ago

I am doing a reasearch project on a career i would like to be when i am in college. I am now a Freshman in high school. Can you give me some advise of what i would do to help this career go up while at school

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almost 6 years ago

i m a vedio editors bt i m not satisfy for this job i want gain more and more knowelge abut this field i m serching good and well job in best company. so kindly any vedio editing jobs are be there so plz inform me .
i have knowelege for photoshop , affter effects , fcp , premier , max .
my no is 9818981578 .


thanks for consider it .

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about 6 years ago

Hello, I'm 14 and thinking about what job I want to aspire for. This sounds very interesting to me, but I was wondering if very many colleges offer training? You mentioned a few, but I they didn't sound like places I want to go to. Does it take a lot of training? What kind of things should I do while I'm in high school? Please email me, it will be a great help:) Your article was very informative.

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almost 9 years ago

Hello, my name is Angelique Vanbaelen, although, I am very interested in what I am reading, i was wondering if this is any good for someone who lives in London UK?



I am currently working for a Digital Photography Company, I work on a computer and edit images, such as having experience in editing our website (in technology)



I would like to improve my carer by going more towards something I would enjoy doing, and what I have been reading is very much interesting me.



If someone could contact me letting me know if this is an opportunity I could go for?



Regards

Angelique Vanbaelen

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almost 6 years ago

I am doing a reasearch project on a career i would like to be when i am in college. I am now a Freshman in high school. Can you give me some advise of what i would do to help this career go up while at school

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almost 6 years ago

i am Film and Video Editor i want job

freshar and i am hard work

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over 5 years ago

Hello, I am currently a Sophmore still in HighSchool but I have decided to Start perparing for a crear and or Collage. As of right now the only thing that i can rlly amagin doing is maby becoming a film Editor, I love to make videos and edit them us to do it all the time when I was youngr, but now i am doign some reaserch on this carrer for a Report in my english class and for myself so I can get what i need don so ic an find and go to a exepitonal collage and hopfully get a Degree in Vidoe editing and become soem sorta film Editor... Anyway I was hoping somone could give me some edvice and or suggest what a Male, Californian Sophmore can do to achive this goal. I relize being in ca might give me a advantige since its huge on Films and what not but i still could use some guidens.

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about 6 years ago

i am handicap
i pass my ssc
i made my videos
Pursuing a Multimedia Animation course from Red Academy which covers Gra fields like Graphic& Web Designing, Audio /Video Editing, 2D & 3D Animation & special FXE Free hand Draw
plzz tel me any video editing job in mumbai
plz plz plz

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about 5 years ago

Thanks for guiding me .......
But i am a fresher in this field and want to work in USA and UK sooo can i get job

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over 5 years ago

1st of thanku for giving this information.this is ANIL kUMAR iam coming from guntur,now i am studying in b.tech 4th year.my aim is to become a filme and video editing in this field freshman plz give me chance in cinema editing field plzzzzzzzz,any call plz infor throug my phone number or email id my contact:+918985108100 email ld:patchavaanil27@gmail.com

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almost 7 years ago

Hi My name is Tiffany and i am 13 and have worked on 200 commercials through the past year and am very proud of all the info you have given me and i am looking forward for someday have a job like this :)

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about 3 years ago

hi, i'm joshim ahmmed diganta, i leave in bangladesh,i need jobs now

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about 5 years ago

hi
em already doing job at pakistani recognized tv channel since 2007 as an NLE
my total work experience is 7 and half year
and em doing free lancing work also,, editing ofnaats, videos, documentries
i have go through your ad and i m interested enough to work with u
kindly consider me

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almost 6 years ago

I am doing a reasearch project on a career i would like to be when i am in college. I am now a Freshman in high school. Can you give me some advise of what i would do to help this career go up while at school

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almost 6 years ago

i need more information on the this career please

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about 6 years ago

This is a good Information, but my question is "What is the work cited???" I really need it!! because I'm doing my Senior Project :/

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over 4 years ago

i lvoe chris borwn he is so sexy God Damn

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over 6 years ago

I've been working as an assistant editor in reality television and can say that this is fairly inaccurate. I'm currently working in nyc and making more than this amount per year. And my company pays toward a lower scale for assistants- and it's reality tv. The bigger money is in fiction tv and movies. So, I'd say if you're any good you'll likely make much more than this per year.

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over 6 years ago

i live in VA and i was wondering if u know of any good video editing colleges here in state because going out of state to NYC, Florida, USC, etc. would be to expensive

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over 6 years ago

Film and Video Editor Job Description, Career as a Film and Video Editor, Salary, Employment - Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

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over 6 years ago

thank you so much for this information. i have a passion for technology specially video editing and i want to build a career on it , where do i start, which equipments should i get.
send the response to my email.
thank you

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over 6 years ago

Am an Editor an I would like to work for you .Thanks.

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over 3 years ago

raed

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almost 2 years ago

hello

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over 4 years ago

i lvoe chris borwn he is so sexy God Damn