Media / Digital Media
Editor - Film and TV
Film and television editors edit and assemble films, videos and digital files from raw, unedited footage.
What does an Editor - Film and TV do?
Film and television (TV) editors edit and assemble films, videos and digital files from raw, unedited footage ('dailies' or 'rushes'), taking into account the mood, pace and climax of films or television productions.
As a film or TV editor, you would:
- organise raw footage into a continuous whole according to scripts or the instructions of directors and producers
- assemble segments in sequences that present stories with maximum effect
- review assembled films, edited videotapes or digital files on screens or monitors to determine if corrections are necessary
- determine the specific audio and visual effects and music necessary to complete films
- set up and operate computer editing systems, electronic titling systems, video switching equipment, and digital video effects units to produce a final product
- select and combine the most effective shots of each scene to form a logical and smoothly running story.
Key skills and interests
To become a film or TV editor, you would need:
- artistic flair and an interest in visual media
- an eye for detail
- good organisational skills
- the ability to produce detailed and accurate work, often to tight deadlines
- good management and leadership skills
- an aptitude for using computers and digital editing software.
Working hours and conditions
Work hours vary with the type of operator or editor, although most work full time. Those who work in broadcasting may put in long hours to meet a deadline. Those who work in the motion picture industry may have long, irregular hours while filming, but go through a period of unemployment after their work on the film is complete and before they are hired for their next job.
Film and TV editors typically work in studios or in office settings.
How to become an Editor - Film and TV?
Entry Level Education
You can work as a film and TV editor without formal qualifications. Your employment prospects may be improved if you have qualifications. You may like to consider a VET qualification in media or screen and media.
Alternatively, you can become a film and TV editor by completing a degree in creative arts, media or screen production, or film and television. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your senior secondary school certificate or equivalent with English. Applicants may be required to attend an interview and/or submit a folio of work.
Employment of film and TV editors is projected to decline, mainly due to advances in digital technology.
Production companies are working within new content delivery methods, such as mobile and online TV, which may lead to more work for editors.
Although there is continued strong demand for new movies and TV shows, less local content is being produced. In broadcasting, the consolidation of roles, such as field reporters who can edit their own work, may lead to fewer jobs for editors at TV stations.