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The TOTEM Poll: Totally Off Topic, Everything Media
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Old August 13th, 2008, 10:32 PM   #1
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Is there an 'Alan Smithee' for editors?

Seriously, I can't believe that I am at a point where I am very seriously considering the request, nay demand that I not be credited for the editing of a project. I would bolt from the project so fast that I would break the sound barrier if it wasn't for my loathing towards not finishing a project. I'm the kind of guy that will stick to something, even under incredible duress, and put in whatever it takes to get a project done… but even I have limits.

Many of you have met this guy before -- the young director that makes up for his lack of experience with a staggering amount of hubris. I know when we start out we all believe we're the next Kubrick… but damn it, he just can't stop directing!

I was hired to be a contributing creative mind for this nano-budget short, however I find that my input is a waste of effort. The director is firmly bent on having it cut the way he wants it cut -- random wide shots, sloppy timing, pace-robbing sequences and all -- despite his overtures of how filmmaking is a collaborative process (which he says like he read it in a book). At this point, I feel I am nothing more than a hired button pusher.

He's making very questionable demands when it comes to the cutting… and they are just bad. My effort on the first couple of rough cuts is quickly being reduced to something that can only be described as amateur.

I know it's his baby; he wrote and directed the thing, so I suppose he's entitled to make his movie as trite and crappy as he wants, but I don't want someone to see my name on it and take it as a representation of the quality of my work.
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Old August 14th, 2008, 08:35 AM   #2
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Why don't you just tell the guy:

"I'm so bowled-over by your native talent that I think you must also get the editing credit because I . . . mere mortal that I am . . . have been but a conduit for your genius. I am unworthy."

And just leave it at that.

Last edited by Peter Wiley; August 14th, 2008 at 08:44 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old August 23rd, 2008, 01:02 PM   #3
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And here I thought we editors we merely that - button pushers. That's why we've gone to Non-Linear Editing: More buttons on a computer keyboard than on an edit controller.

Sounds like it's the director who is pushing ALL the buttons!

<Tongue planted FIRMLY in cheek!>

I've ACTUALLY used the pseudonym Casey N. Finnegan (my Canadian colleagues should get this one: The child and dog team on long-lived CBC children's show Mr. Dressup: Casey & Finnegan!)
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Old August 23rd, 2008, 08:13 PM   #4
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I had a client one time who always wanted to put credits on his crap, and my solution, which worked, was to say: This is really your film, from script to screen. All I did was push the buttons. I think in this instance tradition dictates that you simply put "A Film By (Your Name Here)"...

If that doesn't work, you can always say, "For credits I have always honored my dead parents by using my dad's first name and mother's maiden name." Then make up a name.
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Old August 29th, 2008, 11:36 AM   #5
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Use your 'porn star' screen name - everyone has one. Drop your last name. Shorten your middle name and make it your first name. Take your first name, change it slightly if necessary, and use it for the last name. My screen name thus becomes Jeff Stevens.
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Old August 29th, 2008, 12:47 PM   #6
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From now on, you will all address me as Chaz Joshfeld.
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Old August 29th, 2008, 06:06 PM   #7
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The other variant of your "porn star name" is your middle name followed by the street you grew up on. I'm Christopher Atlantic!
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Old August 29th, 2008, 06:49 PM   #8
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I've heard the porn name game as your first pets name, and the street you grew up on.


"Floppy Westover" has a certain appeal.... doesn't it????
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Old August 29th, 2008, 08:58 PM   #9
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In that case, Rascal Atlantic. That works too.
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Old August 30th, 2008, 10:50 AM   #10
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If you're really having a problem with the director, you could always use Iben Scrood.

Just sayin'.

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Old August 30th, 2008, 12:28 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaun Roemich View Post
The other variant of your "porn star name" is your middle name followed by the street you grew up on. I'm Christopher Atlantic!
I like that ... that makes me either Jeffery Sumpter or Jeffery Fairbanks.
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