Welcome to the first installment of "Next Stop," a superfast Q & A with a superfly member of team F TO 7TH. It's so fast and so fly, you can read it between the 7th Avenue and Carroll Street stops.
Superfast Fact about Ron:I've worked as a cab driver, and for a private detective, and in a sex toy warehouse.
Did you ever drive the private detective to the sex toy warehouse? No.
Oh, that's unfortunate. How is a web series a different animal from your other projects?The primary difference is that I'm not thinking about longer story and character arcs when making decisions. That may just be a fancy way of saying it's shorter.
Or a shorter way of saying it fancier. What was your favorite episode to cut and why? Is this a trick question?
Yes. Will the other episodes feel insulted if I choose only one?
Yes. I really enjoyed watching the footage for "Family" because Amy Sedaris is so hilarious.
Never heard of her. If you had to give a director notes (not me of course), what advice would you give before they shoot? If you are planning something stylistic (such as having a major event happen off-screen, or even a scene that takes place all in one shot), get some standard/typical coverage as well. If your stylistic idea doesn't work when seen in the context of the whole film, you don't have any options if you don't have any options. Secondly, it's important to pay attention to continuity. It's an obvious thing to say, but I think it bears repeating. When it comes to the edit, having options is really your best tool, and bad continuity can be really limiting.
What can't you fix with editing that most people think you can? What can you fix that most people don't think you can't? In my experience, what you can and can't fix has been pretty project-specific. It all depends on how the project was shot. In general, I think the answer to both parts is the same: technical issues. There are some technical problems you can fix in the editing room, and some you really can't. Focus problems, for instance, are almost always in the latter category. But some accidental camera moves and some continuity errors can be fixed. Again, it really depends on how the project was shot. You can fix a surprising number of things very easily in a locked-off shot. This is a boring answer to a very good question. My apologies.
What's your ideal (dreamy) editing job? I'd love to cut a horror film, just because I think it would require some very different decision making to create the atmosphere.
What's a question you always want to be asked as an editor and no one asks it? The question I'd like to hear more, honestly, is "will you cut my feature?" For projects I am actually involved in, it would be great to be asked to be involved in the project from a much earlier stage. On lower-budget indies, editors are usually brought on shortly before production starts (or even during, or after production). It would be great to be involved earlier, because an editor might be able to point out potential problems or issues before the project is shot, which could save headaches in the editing room. On lower-budget projects, editors often aren't involved until after shooting has wrapped, and having an editor watching dailies during production can be very helpful - they can suggest pick-ups and inserts, and even alert a director to technical issues. Reshoots aren't fun for anyone.