Editor Gets First Feature Film Job through Stage 32!

Editor Gets First Feature Film Job through Stage 32!

Editor Gets First Feature Film Job through Stage 32!

Scott Cronan
Scott Cronan
2 years ago

“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” - W.C. Fields

When I read that, I think of the word perseverance. As in, do not give up.

It’s easy to think that once you reach a goal, it’s all smooth sailing from there. That as long as you “try, try again” you will achieve the thing and that’s the end of it.

However, in reality, that theme has been repeated at every step of my 20-year post-production career. It applies each and every day in the smallest of moments and will likely apply every single day, until the day I retire.

Countless client meetings and gigs, late nights and deadlines, and all the work along the way, if at any time things don’t work out, just dust yourself off, regroup, and try again.

I am mostly self-taught when it comes to non-linear video editing and the world of post-production surrounding it.

After years of one-off clients, personal projects (read ways to learn camera, lighting, and editing), and music videos for friends’ bands, I had found it difficult to translate a growing editorial reel into any type of consistent employment.

But I kept trying. I kept taking little gigs for small money. Whatever I could. I never gave up.

Editor Gets First Feature Film Job through Stage 32

And then it happened. I got my first actual full-time paying job working as an editor. I started out in cable television and then spent time over the next two decades across many short-form and feature length documentary style projects ranging from DVD Behind-the-scenes extras to silicon valley behemoth product launch videos and from feel-good short-form branded content to award-winning feature length documentaries and everything in between.

Through the years, no matter how interesting or compelling any particular project was, I always had a desire to get into editing narrative feature films. But, no matter how many clients I made happy nor however many awards I won for unscripted content - there was always still a barrier to making the jump over to this other type of film.

The thing about it is - and I said this over and over as I interviewed for feature edit jobs - is that I had basically been working on narrative features all through my career, for example - the product launch videos were scripted, had a budget of about $5 million and would shoot dailies for about 21 days with a tight post-production schedule that included vfx shots, animatics, dailies, music licensing, and much more. There’s not much an indie feature can throw at me that I couldn’t handle. Convincing a producer of that, even after 20 years in the craft, was another story altogether.

I came into contact with Stage 32 back in 2014. I worked a couple of photography and video gigs for the brand and then joined their network sometime there after. Over the years, as Stage 32 grew, I often turn to the site for top-notch education opportunities as I started to write screenplays and learn more about film development and the other hard to see areas of film-making.

Also, in 2020 I produced a film that won an award at the SXSW film festival in Austin, Texas and Stage 32 was helpful in showcasing the film to potential buyers and distributors following the shutdown of the festival due to the covid-19 pandemic.

Editor Gets First Feature Film Job through Stage 32

Later, as I was looking for work and with our industry mostly shut down, I think I applied to over 300 jobs related to the film and marketing field and had some interviews, but nothing was a great fit.

I turned once again to Stage 32, but this time to the active conversations on the site and almost immediately came across a post by a producer named Laurie Ashbourne. She had a little indie family comedy and was in the need of an editor. I was all too happy to apply and after a few conversations back and forth, I was able to show the many ways I would bring value to their film and help to streamline their post-production process to ensure the best possible film makes it way out to sales and beyond.

Along with Laurie, and the film’s writer/director Daniel Colyer, after weeks of edits and reviews and collaborations, we have put together a really cute, fun, family friendly film that audiences of all ages can enjoy, called, Christmas Time.

Finally, after 20 years in the business, I got my chance to edit a narrative feature film. All of my industry experience across all the areas that I have created content contributed to the success of this feature film.

And thanks to Stage 32 and the community of like-minded creatives, when I seemingly had nowhere else to turn, I tried again and broke through a long-standing barrier in my career.

No matter what stage of career you’re in, there is always another step to take - another way to grow your knowledge as you reach for mastery in your field. Don’t give up. Get creative. And most importantly, always, try again.

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About the Author

Scott Cronan

Scott Cronan

Editor, Producer, Cinematographer, Screenwriter

Award-winning producer / editor with extensive high-profile experience and knowledge in all aspects of creating engaging scripted narrative, documentary, and branded marketing and entertainment content. Major clients span a large number of global brands and marketing strategies. Proficient in budget...

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