Q4 2020

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 62 of 85

63 W I N T E R Q 4 I S S U E W O R K F R O M H O M E at home every single day has brought on many pain points. As Austin Scott, a "Dancing With The Stars" editor and single dad of two, can attest: "After getting the kids set up for their Zoom classes at 8am, I get five Slack notifica- tions about an urgent note needing to be addressed," he said. "As I go to type 'this note has already been addressed, check the Google doc,' my daughter Reese has been dropped from her virtual session." He tries to stay calm as he notices the culprit – she's discovered a new video on YouTube. Drew Forni, an Emmy nominee for "RuPaul's Drag Race," is fortunate to have daycare on most days for his two- and-a-half-year-old twin boys. Even so, recalibrating work/life balance since the pandemic has not been a breeze. "The boys catch a glimpse of the edit bay monitors and NEED to press ALL THE KEYS and make a ton of crazy edits or delete my sequence," he joked, adding that nothing has really disappeared – yet. On days when they can't arrange for day care, it's insanity. "My wife has been making masks since March and our entire living/dining room has turned into a mask production hub. I'm downstairs in the edit bay. If we don't have day care, the masks are paused, orders get backed up, and edits take longer." Working parents in post-production already faced many challenges before the pandemic decimated the old ways of doing business. "The unpredictability of our work is really hard on family," veteran editor Amy E. Duddleston, ACE (" Vi d a" a n d " H u n te r s "), s a i d . " Yo u often don't know if that 'easy' sounding one-hour drama is going to turn into a nightmare where you're working 80 hours a week." "Ted Lasso" editor Melissa McCoy, who shares two kids with husband and editor Ray McCoy, shares the sentiment: "The unpredictable hours makes child care really tricky. Sometimes we don't know until the last second if producers or directors want us to work late," she said. Working from home the past year has presented an unintended consequence: Many are realizing that working in the office no longer has to be the only way. As Scott put it: "What is it about working in an office that's truly necessary? By now, we have largely proven that anyone who wants to (and can successfully) work from home should be allowed to do so." Bronwyn Shields, visual effects editor for HBO's eight-part crime drama "The Night of," concurred: "I hope productions will become more flexible and allow us to work from home or come into the office, based upon the needs of the day. There are so many tools to bridge a home office to an onsite office now." "Empire" editor (and host of the Optimize Yourself podcast series) Zack Arnold believes the days of microman- aging editors might be over. "If there is one silver lining from this pandemic, it's having a much clearer understanding that we get paid for the value we bring to a project, not the hours we work," Arnold said. "Trust that we can manage our time and deliver." Amidst the chaos, folks are thankful when the union has been able to step in and fight for better terms, but they also recognize that there is more to do. Angel Gamboa Bryant, an editor for NBC's "Last Comic Standing," advocates for the eight-hour workday. "Ten to 12 hours is just too long of a day. Since budgets are getting smaller and schedules ever tighter, we're often expected to work a minimum of 10 hours per day to meet deadlines. We need to stop agreeing to that." Where Shields would like to see the union bolster efforts to help working mothers, Forni thinks one of the most important elements is to stay strong on streaming negotiations as remote work becomes more of the norm. Here's more on how some of MPEG members have managed to stay sane and keep on working, no matter what the pandemic has thrown their way. AUSTIN SCOTT (Picture Editor) Q How has COVID impacted your work/family balance? What has changed the most is the way I manage my time. My kids, Reese and Drew Forni.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of CineMontage - Q4 2020