September 2011

Greetings Editing Colleagues,
Spring! Such a great time of the year. Not too cold. Not too hot. Just right for eating porridge.
Entries are now officially closed for the 2011 ASE Awards and Accreditation. The ASE has received a healthy number of entries for all categories. The Judges will now perform their honorable duties.
A big thank you in advance to all those people who volunteered their time and exceptional skill. Best wishes to all those who have entered!
Remember, it really is a matter of "what can you do for your Guild?” Please let us know what you'd like to contribute or make available to share. Let's find great comfort in supporting each other.


Jason Ballantine ASE
ASE President


Well I hope you are all enjoying the warmer weather! It’s been a great start to spring. The Victorian team has got a great month for you sorted. If you have an idea please feel free to let us know at the next event or come to the October Vic committee meeting Monday October 3. Just let us know you are coming via email.
For those of us enjoying the warmth why don’t you wander along to the next Sundowner on Sunday the 11th of September at the Richmond Precinct Hotel, 66 Swan Street between 3 and 7 pm.  What a fabulously lazy way to spend the afternoon chin wagging with fellow filmmakers. Remember anyone is welcome so the more the merrier.
And on Wednesday the 28th of September I’m thrilled to announce that Sasha Dylan Bell and assistant Andre Gorgievski will give us the lowdown on working on Face To Face, which was adapted from the David Williamson play and directed by Michael Rymer. It will be held at Cinema 2 VCA 7pm sharp. This is Sashas first foray into feature land so those of you who want to hear about dealing with a low budget independent film, wrestling with three 5D camera shoot and how to hold your adulation of the experienced director sitting next to you, then come along. It’s going to be awesome! Face to Face starts screening on the 8th of September so do yourself the favour and see it before the event.  There will be drinks after at Curve Bar - The Arts Centre 100 St Kilda Rd so please join us and mix with fellow editors. It should be a grand time.
A huge ASE thanks to Shaun Smith and Kate Williams, who took time out of her whirlwind holiday, to expand our understanding of editing; working in America and of course the soon the be released The Eye of the Storm. A thank you must go to the producers who allowed us to screen three scenes before the release of the film on September 18th.
Have no doubt the Vic committee is plotting, scheming and generally being downright post productionee (sic) coming up with more things for you to enjoy in October. Please keep checking the website. We look forward to seeing you soon.

Cindy Clarkson

Victorian ASE Chairperson

VictorianOffspring Event
By Cindy Clarkson

 (Left to right) Patrick McCabe, Karen Fleming, Denise Haratzis ASE, Maryjeanne Watt, Peter Carrodus ASE, Kate Dennis. (Snapped by Maz)

On a chilly wet night an attentive crowd was given the lowdown of how the popular network television series Offspring is put together in post. With Karen Fleming moderating (who also worked on the series) we were lucky to have Peter Carrodus ASE and Denise Haratzis ASE editors of the hit series; Kate Dennis the main director of program; Maryjeanne Watt post supervisor and Patrick McCabe 1st assistant and assembly editor present.

It is a rare thing to have in the one room such a wealth of creative energy and technical mind focused on a program. Karen took the team through the process of how the tv series is put together from shoot to finish.  The red camera and 5D was used in the first series with the 5D replaced by an AF100 for the second season. The project is cut on Avid Media Composer using a Unity network. The post team receive two camera coverage approximately 3 hours worth each morning transcoded by post facility Blue Post. Patrick and the assistants sync the rushes, which are then placed into episode and scene bins and sent through to the editor. Blue Post does the online using the 4K files and grades each episode in two days with the DoP coming in to make notes before it's pumped out to HD Digibeta and then broadcast in Australia in SD.
To keep Peter and Denise cutting uninterrupted Maryjeanne will help with the workload when there's too much for the assistants to cope with. For Patrick it's great to have a post supervisor who does have an understanding of the process so when trouble does strike it's about how to fix the issue not spending time making the supervisor understand the technical issue that has occurred.
The editors have 14 days to cut an episode during the shooting block. If there is a scene not working and the episode is longer neither editor hesitates if they have to drop the scene. Asher Keddie, who plays Nina, comes in and records an initial version of the narration track so the editors can get the timing right in the cut. The editor and director then rework the scenes and if the program is still running long – an episode length is between 42 to 43 minutes - and they are happy with the episode they will occasionally screen a longer version to the producers John Edwards and Imogen Banks. What Kate loves is that both producers work from the gut so they respond to the episode emotionally while looking after the story arc of the series. Channel Ten's focus is where the advertisement breaks are put so placements of the space is carefully considered for the desired effect to stop the audience channel surfing and not returning.
The main creative shift from the first to second season has been Nina's fantasy. Scott Zero was instrumental in designing the visual look of the fantasy element in the first season where as in the second series the blurring of what is real and Nina's fantasy moment has diminished. Where as there used to be a flash frame before and after the fantasy it now is occasionally at the end.
An added bonus to the evening was the screening of a scene that Denise and Peter cut from first cut to lock off to broadcast edit which was then discussed as the editors plunged back into memory to why the cuts changed whether they be for emotional, story points or commercial breaks.
Thank you to the panelists who gave up their time including Kate who tore back from a Castlemaine location reccy, and VCA Film and TV for their willingness to have the ASE hold the event in their great 90-seater cinema. Special thanks to Patrick McCabe and Karen Fleming who put a lot of work into making the evening the success it was.


Kate Williams - Eye Of The Storm Event
By Karen Fleming


(Left to right) Kate Williams, Cindy Clarkson (ASE Victoria Chairperson), Shaun Smith
ASE Victoria held another discussion about editing at the VCA, this time with The Eye of the Storm editor Kate Williams and assistant editor Shaun Smith. As soon as Kate began speaking it was clear why directors like Fred Schepisi and Steve Buscimi have collaborated with her on numerous films. Peppered with anecdotes which included getting her start in New York by being the Australian girl who understood computers, editing Frozen River, or rather getting students to assemble Frozen River as part of a teaching position before shopping the film to Sundance, and learning tricks of the trade as Jill Billcock’s assistant the night was highly entertaining and informative.

Kate picked up Jill’s technique of immediately assembling several versions of each scene, allowing her to follow her instincts without over analysis, leaving choices to later. She utilized this method while editing The Eye of the Storm, which worked particularly well with Fred as he has a formidable memory with every option stored away, and a desire to see them all.

Also apparent was the huge contribution made by Shaun Smith (assistant editor) to The Eye of the Storm. Aided by his background as a sound recordist and editor, he smoothed the sound for preview screenings had the enormous task of laying up temp tracks naturally paying particular attention to the storm scene, which forms the climax of the film.
Thanks to both the VCA for providing the theatre and The Eye of the Storm Producers for allowing us to screen excerpts of a yet to be released film in order to take advantage of Kate’s brief visit from her home in New York and of course a huge thanks to Kate and Shaun for giving us their time and stories. Keep an eye out for highlights on Art of the Guillotine

'Meet the Members'
…with Beckett Broda
 ASE Member Beckett Broda

Beckett began professionally editing in 1998, after graduating in directing from VCA film school in 1994. He’s cut everything from documentaries, reality series to feature films.
I knew I wanted to work in post… when I was at film school we had an exercise to do where we had to grab off cuts from a trim bin and make something out of it.  It didn’t matter what it was as long as it had some sense to it and was interesting enough to watch.  I realised while I was cutting an image, one frame against another, how that created meaning and where the power of the edit resides.  I wanted to know more.
My first break in the industry came when… I got the chance to cut an independent made documentary at a post house in Melbourne. I was allowed free range on their Avid suites during the evenings, which was great.  When I was stuck technically at 2 am in the morning it made me think on my toes, to be resourceful and nut it out. I went on to edit a series for Singapore TV and haven’t stopped since then.
The thing I love most about editing is… I tend to let the pictures tell me the story. Instinctively every image reveals something that I then translate into my work.  In that way I try and communicate my feelings to a story to the viewer. I love that people react emotionally to visual images so something as small as a frame makes a difference. I find this fascinating.
The best tip I’ve got for aspiring editors is…if you don’t like coffee now, you soon will!! But seriously, there is really no right or wrong way to approach an edit. Get your hands on anything, or shoot something then cut it and experiment. It’s an art and a puzzle so find things yourself, the more you can develop your own style, the better it is in getting that first job. And editing is a learning process that never stops.
If I wasn’t in post-production I’d be… an industrial designer…working on films of course!


'Meet the Members'
…with Paul Booth

ASE Member Paul Booth

Paul Booth has been a regular fixture of South East Queensland postproduction for at least a decade. His credits include assembly editing and assisting on long form dramas, including Beastmaster’, ‘All Saints’ & ‘K9’ through to 1st Assistant on a variety of features including ‘Subdivision’, ‘In Her Skin' and ‘A Heartbeat Away’. He has recently relocated to Sydney with his wife so she could take up a position at Dr.D Studios. He currently divides his time between looking after a 3 year old and the occasional shift Assembling ‘Home & Away’.
I knew I wanted to work in post when… I discovered the disused VHS edit suite during the last year of Fine Arts and unleashed a torrent of simply awful ‘Video Art’ on an unsuspecting public.
My first break in the industry was… Assisting and co-ordinating on the ABC children’s drama ‘The Wayne Manifesto’. I was working at Pizza Hut at the time and the PM though it wasn’t a great leap from looking after pizza boxes to looking after boxes of Neg. (Boxes are the same size but pizza smells better!)
The thing I love most about editing is… The feeling you get when a troublesome scene finally falls into place, you watch it through and it feels ‘natural’
The best tip I’ve got for aspiring editors is… Don’t get hung up on hardware. Take your time, and listen to all the constructive criticism offered.
If I wasn’t in post production I’d be… Doodling in the corner somewhere.


'Meet your Committee'
…with ASE Vice President Melanie Annan
ASE Vice President Melanie Annan
Melanie joined the ASE Committee in 2006 and is currently the Vice President. She edits both drama and factual television and also really enjoys working on short films. At the moment Melanie is cutting At Home with Julia – a four-part narrative comedy series for ABC.
I wanted to work in post whenWhen I was in high school I really loved David Lynch and wanted to be a film director. That was before I discovered editing! I did a BA in Media Studies at Uni and fell in love with the post process. It was the very early days of computer editing and we only had one system (it was an Amiga Draco) to share between all students. I sometimes had to get there in the middle of the night just to get my couples of hours. I loved spending time there piecing stories together for class and also editing friends music videos on the side.
My first break in the industry wasAfter graduating from Murdoch University in Perth I was lucky enough to work for Prospero Productions, an independent documentary production company in Fremantle. I worked in the office and got a fantastic understanding of all aspects of the production process - right from pitching an idea to final delivery items. After hours I would assist for the editors and it was inspiring to work for such great cutters – Lawrie Silvestrin, David Fosdick and Teresa Ashton Graham. My next big break was being accepted into the AFTRS Editing course in 2003. It was fantastic to concentrate purely on editing full-time for those two years and the connections made there where the basis of my editing career here in Sydney.
The thing I love about editing isIn our past we might have sat around campfires - but now I see both film and television as an important way we share stories. I just love being a part of this story telling and of course think editing is one of the most integral parts. I love working in drama but I love documentary too. The emotions and surprises that come up in doco are things that could never be scripted and that’s what I love about it.
I was inspired to join the ASE committeeAfter my time at film school I assisted for two wonderful editors – Emma Hay ASE and Lindi Harrison ASE. They inspired me to join the ASE committee and I have been here ever since. I enjoy helping the ASE run events, awards and of course sundowners! Right now I am helping work on a new website which hopefully we can unveil soon!
The ASE is important becauseIt’s very important to build an editing community and that is what the ASE does. It inspires us with screenings, stories, Q & A’s, articles. Being alone in a dark room for so long, concentrating on the smallest detail can sometimes cut us off from the world, so getting that big picture inspiration and sharing with fellow editors is priceless.


'Meet our Sponsors'
…with EFILM
Anthos Simon, EFILM General Manager – Creative Services
EFILM is proud to support the ASE as a major Sponsor. We work hard to try to support major film events, festivals industry bodies and individual filmmakers throughout the year. EFILM has about 20 dedicated full time staff that handle anything from short films, features and more recently TVC commercial work. It is a small boutique facility that has some major firepower in terms of capacity and creative talent.
We offer a range of service from on-set data wrangling, digital intermediate, colour grading, digital cinema mastering to off line, on line, and deliverables. We work very closely with our two other sister companies that are also located in the same location for ultimate convenience. Deluxe offers film services and sound mixing with two of the largest sound stages in the country. Our other sister company is Method Studios which is a recent addition for us. Method Studios provides creative visual effects (VFX) and design services. It is a complete service from script to screen. I think our strength is in our staff and their ability to offer our customers creative solution to their projects.
Recent credits included: A Few Best Men, Sleeping Beauty, The Sapphires, Oranges and Sunshine. You can check out more by visiting our web site at www.efilm.com.au or calling us on 02 9429 6500.
Cheers Anthos Simon


AFTRS is the national screen arts and broadcast school - the only institution of its kind in Australia -where students spanning all of the specialist areas within the screen arts and broadcast sector work together and study under the one roof with industry standard facilities and gear that includes dedicated production studios for film, recording studios for screen music and sound, equipment stores, technical staff, professional electricians, a set construction workshop, props and staging department, production staff and post production facilities. Students are taught by prominent industry practitioners, and have the opportunity to meet and rub shoulders with influential and leading figures from the sector.
AFTRS courses are:
- Demanding & intense
- Significantly different to regular University and College courses – Constantly adapting & evolving and always at the forefront of change
- Aligned to best practice in the screen arts and broadcast industry
AFTRS opens its doors to prospective students and the public just one weekend each year. If you want to:
- Talk to heads of department about your future prospects
- Learn more about applying for an AFTRS award course
- Check out the amazing location, facilities and gear
Come along to our Open Days:
Saturday September 10: 10am - 3pm
Sunday September 11: 10am - 3pm


Directing and Editing Music Videos
September 17 – 18 (Saturday, Sunday, 9.30 - 5pm)
Final Cut Pro Advanced (Version 7) 
 September 22 – 23 (Thursday, Friday, 9.30 - 5pm)

Introduction to After Effects CS5

 October 6 – 7 (Thursday, Friday, 9.30am - 5pm)
 *Last one sold out quick so get in there fast!

In addition to the courses listed, AFTRS Victoria can tailor a course to suit your company's specific needs. To find out more, contact us on (03) 9602 8300.


 ADG Event “Best of Input 2011”

 The ADG have an event coming up next week that may interest ASE members, and they would like to offer ASE member’s tickets at the ADG member rate. (Under $75 for two days is pretty good value)
Best Of Input 2011 in Sydney is a 2-day event featuring screenings of some of the outstanding drama, documentary and TV specific programming from around the world that screened at the INPUT Conference in Seoul in May.
Screenings are followed by critical discussions led by international and local commissioning editors and program makers, and delegates talk directly with the program maker or commissioning editor of each program via Skype conferencing.
Have a quick look over the event here:
48 Hour Film Project kick off 23rd September 2011 - Register Now!
48 Hour Film Project is an international film competition, where filmmakers must make a short film - write, shoot, edit and score it—in just 48 hours. The 48 Hour Film Project is the world’s largest timed film competition, currently run in over 100 cities.
The competition will start on Friday, 23rd September 2011 and begin at 7pm, were participating teams are given a genre, a character, a prop, and a line of dialogue that they must work into their film. Teams are responsible for putting together a cast and crew, as well as securing equipment, locations, and costumes.
Public screenings will be held during the day at Riverside Theatres in Parramatta on the 9th October, followed by The Awards Night which will begin at 6pm. www.48hourfilm.com/registration/?cityid=108


A discussion on how new software is revolutionising the post-production process:

The AFI is currently offering Industry Membership for $25 so check it out at the link below:

And finally here’s the ASE TVC if you haven’t caught it already:


***Members receive 10% discount to AFTRS courses.
***Members also receive discounts to the Sydney and Melbourne film festivals, so check their websites for details.
***Palace Cinemas in Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney are now offering ASE members $13.50 entry to any film, any session (not including festivals or special events) upon presentation of membership cards.


“First cuts are a bitch for a director, because it's been so many months and you put your trust in your editor and you're going to see your film assembled for the first time. You look at it and go, this is terrible. I hate it.”

Richard Donner (Director of Superman, Goonies, 16 Blocks)


 Until next time
 The ASE Committee