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February 2018

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Page 24 of 43 23 POST FEBRUARY 2018 REALITY TV a certain kind of movie trailer editing style. When you get into the reality segments, which are the background packages, they're going for a documentary feel. More and more over the years, we've tried to get away from the formu- laic walk back and forth bites and more towards the nerves backstage documentary. A lot more of the emotion and personality needs to come through there. Then when we get to the stage, it's really that live event kind of editorial. I know that when a lot of us edit the comments and the sections that happen after a performance, you do get into a little bit of thing where you want to cut the thoughts of the coaches in a way that really represent what they said, but also have a little bit of a live feeling. We want it to feel more conversational and loose and live, so when you got to the live shows, it's not a different world. There are those three aspects of the editing that are sprinkled throughout the show. In a way, it's one of the challenges of the show, to be able to switch gears from the documentary mindset that you're in to the live stage show part — it's also what keeps it from being too monotonous." In order to meet production deadlines, the show requires fast turn-around times from when the footage is shot to when it airs — sometimes just three to four days. "That's the expectation," Stewart says. "Generally, it takes that amount of time to sort of go through the footage, because there's a large amount of footage to look at and a lot of decisions to make." With roughly 20 editors working on The Voice, they are broken up into several teams and then leapfrog one-another, with certain teams working on certain episodes. "When working on episodic shows, you're the editor of that episode. You own it. You know every inch of the footage. You know everything about it and you're responsible for it. A lot of times what can happen on reality shows is you can get passed a segment that someone else edited — a segment that you're not familiar with and don't know that footage. You're being told, 'We want to change things on it' and you have to familiarize yourself with the footage because the editor that started on it is now busy on some- thing else." Stewart says that that's an advantage to working on scripted TV — the familiarity with the material because it's been your episode from the beginning. "On reality, you're sometimes just passed something you have never seen and you have to get up to speed quickly." Stewart certainly admits that reality TV has its challenges, but when he sits down in front of a segment for a reality show, it's what he calls "a blank canvas. You can go in any direction you want. In some cases, you can start at the end of the story…it's your ballgame. You can craft a story however you feel it might work in the confines of the show. I'd say the thing I like most and value about working in reality TV is having that creative freedom in the beginning stages. Then it's almost like every other kind of editorial after that — you're just doing the notes — what the director wants, what the producers want, what the network want. But those first couple of days where it's just you and the footage and you're finding your way, that's a great feeling, of any project, but especially reality shows." — By Linda Romanello Season 13 winner Chloe Kohanski. Kelly Clarkson is The Voice's newest coach. Editor Jason Stewart

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