I got a plethora of amazing responses from editors from all parts of the globe (and some from post assistants and AEs) about doing their own graphics, sound mixing, and VFX, etc.
Turns out: Editors end up doing a lot of the work, even function as their own AEs (and found out, there aren’t many AEs in other parts of the world! Sorry, Holland and other places).
I’d asked this question because job listings for AEs kept popping up with “must know v, w, x, y, z [just list the whole alphabet, actually] softwares and be comfortable color correcting, sound mixing, onlining, and creating graphics,” but then listing a horribly low rate. YES, low rates keep popping up, but NO I’m not going to get into that because we’ve beaten that horse dead time and time again.
Getting all these responses from editors [sidenote: I will replying back to you all, promise!] put into perspective a few things:
1) People assume editors (and AEs) have to know EVERYTHING, which, personally, I think is near impossible and unfair to ask of ONE PERSON. And before anyone starts ranting about “Knowing more makes you more marketable, blah blah blah,” trust me, I get that. I know how to use multiple editing platforms and am pretty proficient with Adobe stuff (thanks, college graphics job!). I know these things because I want to learn them AND because I do think they make me more marketable in my field. HOWEVER, I also know other people work their arses off to specialize in making title graphics for movies and trailers (those people are wicked talented), sound mixing like a boss, and color correcting like DaVinci [post joke!]. What irks me is that it’s expected of people from people who have NO IDEA how post actually works (I’ve actually had some producers admit this to me, shockingly).
2) Knowing all of these tasks steals other people’s jobs! Actually had an editor email me from Singapore saying s/he does the work, but said s/he didn’t like doing it because it’s affecting the job market of those who specialize in graphics/sound mixing/color correcting. It’s similar to outsourcing…but not..?
It’s no wonder the VFX guys were protesting back when “Life of Pi” came out, but it’s happening a lot these days in our industry primarily in post: higher-ups wanting the champagne life on a beer budget. And the crazy thing is, it wouldn’t really be tolerated outside of our industry! No one would hire construction workers under the conditions that they know how to also design blueprints, wire the structure, and interior decorate the building for the wage of a construction worker! IT WOULDN’T HAPPEN!
I admire the editors who handle everything from start to finish. THAT’S CRAZY!
(Not really sure this post makes sense…bottom line: I appreciate all the editors who shared their stories with me. I feel your pain. High five an AE today and know we’re in this Hell together, lol).