Terilyn Shropshire is an award-winning editor who has consistently collaborated with prolific directors. She walks through how she communicates with directors from production, through presenting the editor's cut, and into collaborating through the long revision process. 

Key Insights

  • The editor is the first audience for the film; the role requires being both patient and relentless in finding the story.
  • The script provides the first viewing of a film to the editor.  
  • During a shoot, an editor should be watching dailies and communicating with the director throughout the shoot; if there’s a problem with performance or coverage, the editor should let the director know right away.  
  • In choosing selects, you can group clips together and watch every take, noting where you feel the visceral emotion of the characters and story. 
  • An editor’s cut is the director’s first viewing of their film. Check to see if your director wants you to include music, and present the best possible version of this cut.  
  • The director may have a strong emotional response to the editor’s cut - be patient and allow them to process the experience, reassure them, and then get into a productive creative flow.  
  • Every director is a singular force of nature. An editor and director can have different opinions of what’s most important. Listen and try to understand your director’s intention and find a solution that works best for the story and authentic emotion of the film.


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