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Film and Video Editor Interview
Questions

30 Questions and Answers by Rachelle Enns
Updated August 17th, 2018 | Rachelle is a job search expert, career coach, and headhunter
who helps everyone from students to fortune executives find success in their career.
Job Interviews     Careers     Communications    

Question 1 of 30

Are you a detail oriented person?

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1.

Are you a detail oriented person?

A film or video editor is expected to be able to pay attention to tiny details no one else is able to see, such as a slight change in lighting, or a small blip in a transition between shots. This careful detail is necessary to create flawless video. The candidate should discuss their strengths surrounding paying attention to small details, and how this skill will help them be successful in the career.

Rachelle's Answer

"I consider myself a very detail oriented person. In previous jobs, I am often the person everyone else turns to when they need a second set of eyes before they submit a project. I am able to pick up on details no one else sees, and I can bring that to your team."

2.

What are your career goals?

The candidate should respond by mentioning what they aspire to do in the future based on what they hope to improve upon and achieve in the current job. The candidate should show how passionate about the current job they are and how much they hope to grow within the position. A hiring manager is looking for someone who plans to stick around the company for a while and not only improve his or herself but also help the company grow. The candidate should discuss how they plan on making the workplace a great one over time.

Rachelle's Answer

"Far off in the future, I aspire to be a movie editor in Hollywood. However, in order to get to that level of skill and knowledge, I believe I am a great fit for your production team. I am detail oriented and I can even further develop this skill with you over time. I hope to produce great films with your company so that someday I will be as great as big-time movie editors."

3.

Do you work well under pressure?

Editing films and video is often time consuming, yet editors are faced with tight deadlines. The candidate must prove that they are able to complete the job quickly but still produce their best work possible. They may also give an example of a time where they were put under pressure and how they managed to resolve the situation.

Rachelle's Answer

"I find that I do my best work under pressure. I am able to concentrate strictly on the job at hand and put all my doubts about the project aside."

4.

What are you most proud of in your career?

The candidate should describe part of their career in which they are the most proud, whether it be about previous projects, the skills they have developed, or the positions in companies they have held. The candidate should talk about why they are so proud of this and how this element would be beneficial for the company to have.

Rachelle's Answer

"I am most proud of how I became an editor and director of films in just 8 years. While this may seem like a long time for some, I have climbed up the ladder and made myself a valuable editor to any film, and I know that working in your company, I will continue to grow."

5.

Tell me about your favorite project as a film and video editor.

The candidate should proudly describe one of their favorite projects they have worked on and why it was their favorite. They may reference certain techniques they used in it, or describe the feeling of the outcome upon watching it back as a final product.

Rachelle's Answer

"My favorite project was working on an independent film that went to the Cannes Film Festival last year. I learned so much from the other older editors and photographers on set, yet I was the one who was tasked with editing all of the sound, which later won the film Best Sound and Tracks at the festival."

6.

What are your salary expectations?

A film and video editor makes an average of $45,000/year, depending on how many prior years experience they have, and for what company they are applying. The candidate should give a reasonable range of salaries they hope to be paid for the job so they and the interviewer can come to an agreement on proper payment.

Rachelle's Answer

"I am hoping to make between $50,000-$55,000 for this job, considering that I have worked for many years at a great company as a film editor and can offer much to this company. I also expect to grow in the years I work here."

7.

Would you prefer to work as a full time employee or as a contracted freelancer?

There are benefits and downsides to both being a full-time employee and being a contracted freelancer. The candidate should discuss which they would prefer and why.

Being a full time employee means receiving full benefits from a company, a mostly consistent work schedule, and job protection under a contract. Some candidates prefer this type of commitment because it means consistent work and pay. However, some candidates prefer an irregular work schedule where they are not tethered to one company, and instead will work individual jobs as a freelancer for the same pay, but no benefits. This allows them the freedom to work with various clients instead of only working for one.

Rachelle's Answer

"I would prefer to be a contracted freelancer because I like to pick and choose the projects I work on over time. Although I respect your company, I want the freedom to work on other side projects throughout the year, yet also produce great work for your clients."

8.

In your opinion, what is the most exciting advancement in the industry this year?

The candidate should demonstrate that they are staying up to date with the latest technologies film and editing software, techniques, and technology.

Rachelle's Answer

"I think the most exciting advancement of the year is the more practical uses of virtual reality in the field. Although virtual reality in filming was introduced years ago, just this year it became easier for videographers to shoot with virtual reality and editors to add it in post production."

9.

What type of leadership style do you take direction best from?

The candidate uses this question to discuss how they work with others, especially under the management of a team leader or client. The candidate should respond by giving their prior experience working under someone's supervision and what types of leadership they work best with. Some of these leadership types include someone who gives lots of feedback or someone who is hands-off.

Rachelle's Answer

"I work best with a leader who is hands-on. I like getting feedback often on my projects so I know I am making the client happy continuously."

10.

What has been your biggest professional disappointment?

A good response is for the candidate to discuss one example of when they have been disappointed in the past in their career. A person may have accepted a job position they regret, or wished to progress faster in their career, as a few examples. The candidate should not only discuss why this was a disappointment, but how they recovered from it and found new hope moving forward.

Rachelle's Answer

"My biggest professional disappointment is that I did not get a raise in my past job. However, I realized down the line that the job was not the right one for me, and I am glad to be in the position I am now, applying at this company instead."

11.

Who do you admire the most in film editing?

The candidate should describe a film editor who they look up to and talk about why they think this person is admirable. This gives the interviewer insight into how the candidate aspires to grow in their job and who motivates them.

Rachelle's Answer

"I look up to James Cameron because he has made some of the most creative films in history. I find his editing technique fascinating because he cuts from wide angles to tight shots quickly, and I aspire to create emotion in my films the way he does."

12.

Do you aspire to be a director or producer one day?

The candidate should discuss their future plans and whether or not they include becoming a director or producer in the future. The candidate should discuss why they want to reach this height in their career and how this current job will help them reach that goal in the future.

Rachelle's Answer

"I aspire to be a film producer in the future. I believe I have strong leadership skills and have a good eye for editing, and someday can help others produce their best work. Until then, I can't wait to learn as much as I can about the industry."

13.

What program(s) do you use for video editing?

The candidate should discuss their experience with editing software, and talk about which ones they prefer using and why. Examples include Adobe After Effects, Adobe Premiere, Edius, and Final Cut Pro X.

Rachelle's Answer

"If I'm using a Macbook, I'll work in After Effects or Premiere. If I need to use Windows, I'll work in both After Effects and Premiere and maybe even Final Cut Pro. However, if a client has a particular preference, we can discuss my experience with it and can give it a shot."

14.

Were you part of a student filmmaker society during university?

The candidate should discuss whether or not they had been a part of a filmmaker society during their time in post-secondary education. If the candidate has, they should mention what benefits they have received from it, such as great contacts and internships and early exposure to the film industry. If they did not participate in college, they should discuss other experience in the field they had during their college years, if any, and how that helped them grow.

Rachelle's Answer

"In college, I was a part of the Society of Professional Journalists. While it wasn't specifically tailored to filmmaking, a large part of what we did on a weekly basis was taking cameras and shooting stories to present to each other and critique them. This helped me develop my videography skills over time and I learned a lot about shooting good video for news."

15.

What are your preferred working hours?

The candidate should discuss with the hiring manager the times throughout the day they can perform their best work. While hiring managers are often looking for a candidate who can fill a certain position or time slot, the candidate should mention what times they work best, yet also mention how they are able to adjust to various working hours over time. The candidate should demonstrate ultimately that regardless of the hours they work, their work will remain consistent and strong.

Rachelle's Answer

"I work best in the early morning hours. I am more alert and am able to do some of my best and fastest work early in the day, but if I was put on a later afternoon shift, I would be able to find a way to adjust and still do my best work."

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30 Film and Video Editor Interview Questions
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Interview Questions

  1. Are you a detail oriented person?
  2. What are your career goals?
  3. Do you work well under pressure?
  4. What are you most proud of in your career?
  5. Tell me about your favorite project as a film and video editor.
  6. What are your salary expectations?
  7. Would you prefer to work as a full time employee or as a contracted freelancer?
  8. In your opinion, what is the most exciting advancement in the industry this year?
  9. What type of leadership style do you take direction best from?
  10. What has been your biggest professional disappointment?
  11. Who do you admire the most in film editing?
  12. Do you aspire to be a director or producer one day?
  13. What program(s) do you use for video editing?
  14. Were you part of a student filmmaker society during university?
  15. What are your preferred working hours?
  16. Are you willing to work overtime to meet a deadline?
  17. How do you present your edited and final work to your client(s)?
  18. Who do you admire most in the film industry?
  19. How would you describe yourself as a Film and Video Editor? What techniques and styles do you deploy?
  20. When was the last time you faced a high-pressure situation and how did you react?
  21. How do you react to criticism about your work?
  22. Do you work well on a team?
  23. What are you looking for in terms of career development?
  24. What equipment do you use for filming? (i.e lens and/or lighting)
  25. How is your vision?
  26. What is the most difficult part of being a film and video editor?
  27. What is the most rewarding part of being a film and video editor?
  28. What do you like least about being a film and video editor?
  29. What do you like most about being a film and video editor?
  30. Why did you choose to pursue a career as a film and video editor?
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