Spring 2015

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 7 of 83

6 CINEMONTAGE / SPRING 2015 by Tomm Carroll S ummer's coming up fast, and with it, Hollywood's perennial penchant for putting superheroes of all stripes up on the silver screen — usually with a sequel — in a bid to bag a blockbuster, or score another one. The folks at Disney-owned Marvel have excelled at that scenario in recent years, re-setting the bar three years ago with a record-shattering $207.4 million domestic opening weekend for The Avengers, and an unfathomable $1.52 billion in total worldwide gross. With its much- hyped follow-up, Avengers: Age of Ultron, hoping to up that ante when it opens May 1, and a new film introducing another Marvel comic book character — Ant-Man — due to debut July 17, Disney/ Marvel looks likely to dominate this year's box office receipts as well. As fans of its comic book heroes and their multitudinous movie manifestations already know, the "Marvel universe" also has expanded to the television screen (and even to Netflix), most notably with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., which is based on a non-superhero character who was "killed" at the conclusion of 2012's Avengers feature. With its Season 2 finale scheduled for May 12 on the (also Disney-owned) ABC network, the series has earned respectable ratings and there are even rumors of a spin-off series. But aside from just bringing Marvel heroes to primetime, S.H.I.E.L.D. also introduced feature film-quality special effects and production values to primetime. While most of those agents don't possess superhuman powers, the series' post-production practitioners — chiefly the editorial team — seemingly do. Led by Joshua Charson, the three- editor, three-assistant, one-effects editor team scales the insurmountable every Tuesday night during the regular TV season. As the editor tells our writer Michael Goldman in this issue's cover story, "We're producing a show that is next to impossible to pull off on network TV." But actually, when you come right down to it, our post-production professionals are the real heroes, if not superheroes, among the collaborators who create entertainment, particularly in television or low-budget indie productions. Consider the other articles this issue on projects whose subjects could also be considered heroic: Nicholas Renbeck was called upon to do double duty as supervising sound editor and music editor on Love & Mercy, the Brian Wilson biopic from Roadside Attractions due June 5. Depicting the heroes (and villains) in the life of the tortured musical genius of the Beach Boys, what Renbeck does with the audio tracks in this feature is a worthy homage to the pioneering soundscapes Wilson himself employed in his band's more innovative sonic excursions back in the 1960s and early '70s, as writer Debra Kaufman reports in her profile of Renbeck. Likewise, the tech-savvy editor Zach Staenberg, ACE — best known for his Oscar-winning work on The Matrix — heroically pulled out all the stops on the short-scheduled indie Good Kill, set for release May 15 through IFC Films. Portraying the work and home life of a morally conflicted Air Force major tasked with conducting drone strikes in the Middle East from a base in Las Vegas, the film pits advanced technology against the reality-disconnect that can result from it, which makes the flyer a reluctant hero-of-sorts. Bill Desowitz interviews the editor. Heroism is not always that evident in the day- to-day work of our members in the engineering departments of studios and sound facilities. Mel Lambert shines a spotlight on a sextet of such "unsung heroes" who ensure that the equipment and technology used by editors and mixers are always working at their best. And last but decidedly far from least is the labor hero. Retired cinetechnician and former head of IATSE's West Coast Office, Joseph A. Aredas gives new meaning to the term "Local Hero." On Saturday, May 2, the Guild presents him with its 2015 Fellowship and Service Award. To mark this special occasion, this issue offers a salute to Aredas — who is interviewed about his impressive career by Patrick Gregston — and includes testimonials from many of his admirers. Join us in congratulating Joe at the award ceremony at the Sheraton Universal at 6:00 p.m. For more information or tickets, contact Serena Kung at f POST SCRIPT We Can Be Heroes

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of CineMontage - Spring 2015