“Film Cutter: He puts the pieces together…” Marlene Dietrich

cooper dietrich 1936

Nothing fazes him. He cannot only change the action, but, by clipping tiny frames of film to speed it up or by adding tiny pieces to delay it, he can also change reaction.

He can cut sound with the skill of a surgeon and can if need be, cut out a breath and draw no blood.

Marlene had a flair for epigrams, however…

The Mister’s uncle worked as an editorial assistant for Margaret Booth. The only thing that fazed her was the thought of her assistants making final edits. During post-production on “Mutiny on the Bounty” she was struck with appendicitis and had to be carried out of the editing room on a stretcher, against her will, hurling warnings, “Don’t you touch my film!”

Of course the assistants were required to do just that by the producers, so on her recovery she returned to clip some tiny frames here, and tiny pieces there…


  1. George Kaplan

    Alan Rickman 1946-2016, Requeiscat in Pace

    Known for his brilliant stage performances in such works as Les Liaisons Dangereuses (his breakthrough role as the Vicomte de Valmont), John Gabriel Borkman, and Cleopatra (opposite Helen Mirren); as indelibly memorable villains on-screen in Die Hard, Robin Hood Prince of Thieves (hilariously over-the-top as the Sheriff of Nottingham, declaiming such lines as “I’ll cut his heart out… with a spoon!” and “(C)ancel Christmas!”), and – capturing a new generation – the Harry Potter movies (playing tragic anti-hero Severus Snape who, partly through Alan’s performance, becomes possibly the most sympathetic character in the series); and for – among many other attributes and accomplishments – his sonorous voice, silky charisma, acidulous wit, piercing intelligence, warmth, and sheer Humanity, Mr Rickman’s death at 69 from cancer is a terrible loss for his loved ones, friends, admirers, the theatre, the world of cinema (his second directorial foray, A Little Chaos, was released just last year), several charities, and to the acting profession. However, as the many heartfelt tributes from both those who knew him and those who didn’t attest, his memory and his work will live on. The Spark Of Life Ne’er Extinguished Even In Death.

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