Joi McMillon, who has worked consistently in post production on projects including Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds, Talk to Me, and NBC’s The Biggest Loser, recently spoke with Post in Black about the fundamentals of editing and her work on Chlorophyl, the forthcoming short film by director Barry Jenkins.
Regarding reality TV and feature films, Joi spoke to the difficulties of moving from one medium to another:
“I spent around three years working in reality and had successfully worked my way up the ladder. My post producer was prepared to give me my first editing gig, and I knew at that moment if I took that job it would be next to impossible to walk away…
When I left reality television I had to start at the bottom of the feature film ladder, as an apprentice editor, and work my way up all over again. I knew that going into it, but working in features was an undeniable goal and completely worth it.”
She also opened up about working with Barry on Chlorophyl, a film we’ve covered previously on this site:
“It’s funny, in film school Barry was my cinematographer and I did his production design. Now, working together as director and editor I don’t think much has changed. Barry has always been a focused director who clearly communicates his overall vision for a film.
Communication was key on this project because our post process was essentially a long distance relationship. I live in Los Angeles and Barry is based in San Francisco. Therefore, except for a weekend that I went up to San Francisco, we worked together on this film via phone, e-mail, and occasional telepathy. We both had copies of the film’s media files, so I could e-mail the cuts to him and he would send back notes. We would always talk before I executed notes to make sure we were in sync.
It had been a while since we worked together so it was fun to reconnect on this project. Barry is such an inspiring filmmaker and motivates his crew, his actors, and, of course, his editor to perform at the highest level. I am proud of what we accomplished on the film and look forward to working together again, which I’m sure will be very soon.”
Speaking of film school, I’d be remiss not to plug Florida State University [one of the top film schools in the world ;)], where Joi, Barry and I were all classmates.
One of the great things about film school, beyond learning how to hone your craft, is being surrounded by supremely talented, independent thinkers, and eventually seeing their success come to fruition. Proud to say that most of us are still in the industry, and doing well.
For the full interview with Joi McMillon, click here.