First Cut

First Cut : Conversations with Film Editors

By (author) Gabriella Oldham

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"First Cut" banishes forever the idea that a film editor simply "cuts out the bad stuff". Garbriella Oldham offers a series of interviews with 23 award-winning film editors who provide a full picture of the complex art and craft of editing a film. Filled with animated anecdotes and detailed examples, this book covers both documentary and fiction film editing. To edit is not merely to cut. Behind every cut are numerous considerations - rhythm, musicality, intuition, emotion, psychology, art, point of view, dialogue - that must be taken into account to give a film the seamless finish we see in the theatre. These interviews explore the way in which each editor approaches his or her craft; particular sequences are described, as are the issues that lead to editorial decisions.

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  • Hardback | 417 pages
  • 157.48 x 233.68 x 33.02mm | 884.5g
  • 01 Aug 1992
  • University of California Press
  • Berkerley
  • English
  • 24 b&w photographs
  • 0520075862
  • 9780520075863

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Author Information

Gabriella Oldham is a freelance writer. Her books include "First Cut: Conversations with Film Editors" (UC Press), and "Keaton's Silent Shorts."

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Review quote

"This superb collection of interviews illuminates the art of film editing with a level of detail and insight that few previous books have possessed. . . . Through descriptions of the cutting of key sequences in films directed by Coppola, De Palma, Forman, Pollack, Lumet, and others, Oldham's interviewees reveal not just the mechanics of cutting shots together but also how an editor is guided intuitively by the 'inner rhythm' of a sequence. . . . This book is indispensable for all those who wish to deepen their understanding of the editor's contribution to film structure."--Stephen Prince, "Film Quarterly

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