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Translating the Human Experience Through Documentary Editing

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News : Translating the Human Experience Through Documentary Editing

Learn the art of documentary editing from award-winning editors at Manhattan Edit Workshop; The Art of Documentary Editing runs October 29th – November 2nd; early bird pricing ends October 5th

Last Updated: September 26, 2012 3:02 pm GMT
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(New York, New York--September 26, 2012) Manhattan Edit Workshop (MEWshop), the cutting-edge authorized digital training destination for post-production and content creators, is proud to announce the return of its five-day intensive workshop, The Art of Documentary Editing, from October 29th – November 2nd. Taught by Janet Dalton, MEWshop’s director of education and freelance editor, and MEWshop owner and filmmaker Josh Apter, students will explore the many techniques of documentary editing, from the creative decisions that make a great story to established workflow methods for picture and sound that every editor should know.

The workshop will also feature an impressive lineup of guest speakers, including Sam Pollard (When The Levees Broke, Four Little Girls), Jonathan Oppenheim (Paris Is Burning, Sister Helen), Robert Eisenhardt (Valentino: The Last Emperor, Woodstock: Now and Then), and Arielle Amsalem (By the People: The Election of Barack Obama, The Education of Dee Dee Ricks). These award-winning editors will discuss their own work and careers in a rare opportunity for students to learn the craft from some of the best in the field. Instructors and students will screen and deconstruct clips from a wide range of non-fiction genres, and also cut footage from real documentaries – experiencing firsthand how editing can affect character or story and create or alter reality. There will be frequent screenings and critiquing of each other's work.

“Documentary editing is such a specific art, because you’re taking real events and telling a story through the act of editing – there’s no storyboard or roadmap. It’s a process that feels more like writing with images and sound than anything else,” says Josh Apter, founder of Manhattan Edit Workshop and workshop instructor. “And students will learn that art as well as the technology behind documentary editing; for example, understanding how Avid’s Script Sync and Adobe's Speech Analysis can minimize the time spent searching through hours of footage, and how Red Giant's PluralEyes can be an essential tool for syncing footage.”

“Documentary editing is writing with living people’s words and moving images to create a story. It is a totally unique endeavor. Subjects of a documentary want to tell their stories; they want to trust the filmmakers, and they ultimately want to be contained by the audience,” says guest instructor for the workshop and award-winning documentary editor Jonathan Oppenheim of documentary editing and the knowledge he brings to the workshop. “As an editor, you are in a unique position to honor that trust or to abuse it, and the intention you bring to the process is crucial. Do I want promote something, make an ad, make propaganda, serve an agenda, or make art? Art is the word I use to express the most honest and complex rendering I can muster of a subject’s existence. This is my intention and, for me, it is the primary guide in the shaping of a story. It is a means to keep the bar high and the aim true. If you intend to express the universal within a subject, you have a shot at doing it.”

Guest instructor Sam Pollard, an editor with nearly 30 years of industry experience, says of the workshop, "As far as I am concerned, documentary editing is the definitive way to learn how to tell a story in filmmaking."

Students of the Art of Documentary Editing workshop will gain a wealth of knowledge over the course of five days. While students will learn and explore the technology used for documentary editing, they must come to the class with experience in Final Cut Pro, Avid or Premiere Pro. Students may enroll in a certified Avid Media Composer 6, Premiere Pro CS6 or FCP X class prior to the Art of Documentary class and receive a 15% discount on both classes.

Students are welcome to take material from the class to use on their personal reels.

Register before October 5th to save $200. The regular cost of the workshop is $1,395. The Art of Documentary Editing will run from Monday, October 29th through Friday, November 2nd, from 10am to 6pm each day.

About The Art of Documentary Editing Guest Speakers

Sam Pollard
Sam Pollard is an accomplished feature film and television video editor and documentary producer/director whose work spans nearly 30 years. He recently served as producer and supervising editor on the Spike Lee directed HBO documentary If God Is Willing and Da Creek Don't Rise, a five year follow up to the Emmy and Peabody award-winning doc When The Levees Broke. Pollard recently completed as a producer/director Slavery By Another Name, a 90-minute documentary for PBS that competed at the Sundance Festival in 2012. Pollard and Lee also co-produced a number of documentary productions for the small and big screen, including Spike Lee Presents Mike Tyson, a biographical sketch for HBO for which Pollard received an Emmy, and Four Little Girls, a feature-length documentary about the 1963 Birmingham church bombings which was nominated for an Academy Award.

Bob Eisenhardt
Bob Eisenhardt, A.C.E. is a three-time Emmy Award winner and Oscar nominee. With over 60 films to his credit, he has edited documentaries for Barbara Kopple, Maysles Films, Susan Froemke, Marc Levin, Alex Gibney, and David Grubin among many others. His latest film, Wagner's Dream, traces the conception and creation of the new Metropolitan Opera production of the Richard Wagner's Ring Cycle. It premiered at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival.

Jonathan Oppenheim
Jonathan Oppenheim’s editing credits include Sister Helen and Children Underground, a film he co-produced, which was nominated for an Oscar. He edited the classic documentary feature Paris Is Burning, which was awarded the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance. Oppenheim also edited and co-produced The Oath, a psychological portrait of Osama bin Laden’s former bodyguard, which premiered at Sundance and Berlin. Oppenheim has been a story consultant on many films, including How to Survive a Plague, The Unmaking of Spiderman and The Light in Her Eyes. In 2011, Oppenheim lectured on the art of documentary editing at The New Museum and mentored Eastern European filmmakers at the Ex Oriente Lab in Prague. He has been both an Advisor and a Fellow at the Sundance Institute Documentary Edit and Story Lab.

Arielle Amsalem
Arielle Amsalem is an Emmy Award-winning editor of feature length documentary films. After graduating from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts film program, Arielle began her career working assisting on Spike Lee’s award-winning documentary, When the Levees Broke, a film about the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. She has since been the editor of several feature documentaries including the Edward Norton-produced HBO documentary By the People: The Election of Barack Obama, for which she won the Primetime Emmy for Picture Editing for Nonfiction Programming. More recently, Arielle edited The Education of Dee Dee Ricks, which was bought and aired by HBO, and The Contradictions of Fair Hope, which has won awards at festivals around the country. Arielle has also worked on television shows for MTV, the Food Network, The Cooking Channel and Travel Channel.

About Manhattan Edit Workshop – Certified Training in New York City and Your City
Headquartered in New York’s Union Square, Manhattan Edit Workshop was founded in 2002 with the goal of providing cutting-edge instruction on Apple®, Adobe® and Avid® platforms. Since then, Mewshop has added Digital Cinema Production classes, DaVinci Resolve, Autodesk® Smoke®, Assimilate Scratch training and a two-week “Filmmakers Intensive” course to its already impressive curriculum. Mewshop’s signature Six-Week Intensive is a jump-start for anyone looking for a career in post-production, while weekend and one-week courses introduce and solidify core editing concepts. Corporate and group training offers a customized curriculum, either in-house or on-site, for professionals eager to learn a new skill or to build on existing ones. The facility’s focus on small workshops, highly skilled and certified faculty, and a results-oriented curriculum have quickly won it the reputation as New York’s premier post-production teaching facility.

Follow @mewshop on Twitter and Facebook. For more information please visit the Manhattan Edit Workshop website.

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