Every once in a while smart people get together to do good.
In this case, the Women In Film Foundation was sitting on countless hours of some 40 Legacy Series video interviews with industry achievers–including Debbie Allen, Martha Coolidge, Eva Marie Saint, Fay Kanin, Evelyn Keyes, Marcia Nasatir, Margaret O’Brien, Anna Hamilton Phelan, Meta Wilde, Joan Tewkesbury, Fay Wray, Jane Wyatt and Laura Ziskin– that needed editing.
After talking to WIF’s Ilene Kahn Power and Linda Feferman about the series, Barbara Boyle, UCLA’s Chair of the UCLA Department of Film, Television and Digital Media, figured out a clever way to kill two birds with one stone. She allocated some funding for first-round Legacy Series interviewee, legendary film editor Anne V. Coates (Lawrence of Arabia), to guest lecture as editor-in-residence along with professor Felicia Henderson, over the summer at UCLA, providing guidance and feedback as film students edited the footage into something someone would want to see. (See clips of Coates teaching here.)
The program was a success, as Coates took the students through the ropes of editing on several of her features, and then gave them tips as they edited interviews into documentary features.
I sat in on one class as she discussed her work on Adrian Lyne’s 2002 adultery drama Unfaithful and realized how crucial she was in helping to shape Diane Lane’s performance into one that would earn an Academy Award nomination. It was Coates who decided to intercut the famous sequence with Lane riding the train amid flashbacks to her recent adulterous sex with French heart throb Olivier Martinez. Lane was great. But Coates made her unforgettable.