Wish Hill (2021), directed by Aleah Marrow of the DLE Advisory Board, premiered exclusively for the DLE last month with an enthusiastic, supportive international audience.
I had the opportunity to team up with Aleah and several other DLE members to create that memorable experience for attendees. From my first viewing of the film, I knew Aleah had produced something precious, and I was determined to help her present it both intimately and comfortably.
What I learned in the advance prep is that Aleah needed a trailer for promotional purposes. Eager to gain new experience and flexing my passion for video editing, I offered to help. After a hectic fall semester, I was looking to unwind and take on a responsibility that was more personal. Aleah’s film was ethereal in its tone and setting, luring me to edit the film.
My interest in editing arose when I was around 14 years old. Filming on location with cameras was fun, but I found editing to be where the true film was made. A skilled editor can craft, shift and sculpt the tone, mood and even overall theme of a film. Moreover, laying out all the clips on a timeline and trimming the frames of each shot was always a cathartic experience.
Aleah remained inviting and understanding throughout the whole process. We both knew editing remotely would be a challenge. Having returned to my home in India for my college’s winter break, I now was located 10 hours ahead of Aleah. When her schedule was open, it would be nighttime for me.
Working through the challenges required me to edit independently and send Aleah a draft. She would then provide extensive and detailed feedback. Trust and effective communication were key in this process. Effective communication meant Aleah would send me exact timestamps, seconds and frame details of how she envisioned the final cut.
As the editor, I felt strongly about certain choices and would include that in my edits, all of which Aleah remained open-minded to. There were about seven drafts of the trailer before it was finalized. It wasn’t complete until we were both satisfied and believed it conveyed the themes of the film in a gripping but truthful way. It must be noted that there was also a second editor who played an advisory role and acted as a third set of eyes, which was incredibly helpful.
I am thankful to Aleah for opening up and inviting me into the creative process of such a wonderfully personal project. This experience allowed me to relive my passion for video editing. But most importantly, it showed me that this future of remote collaboration we are headed toward, although challenging at times, is possible when following your passions.
Click here to view the Wish Hill trailer.
WISH HILL PROJECT DELIVERS A POWERFUL LEARNING EXPERIENCE
Reflecting on her collaboration with DLE Marketing Intern Kaviyan Deena, Wish Hill producer/director Aleah Marrow thrills in the mutual learning exchange that emerged while creating a film trailer together.
“Working with Kaviyan was a lot of fun, because I got a chance to learn from him,” proclaims Aleah, who serves on the DLE Advisory Board. “He has a great skill set for editing, and I enjoyed listening to what he felt worked from a creative standpoint. I really try to take on a student-of-life attitude. That helps when collaborating on certain projects, because sometimes your partner sees things you don’t.”
“His patience was very comforting,” she continues. “We had a lot to communicate working with a massive time difference between us (Kaviyan being in India and Aleah in North Carolina). We were able to capture the film in a very gripping and beautiful way. I hope Kaviyan is open to keeping that skill honed, because he is extremely good.”