Ep. 05 – A Deep Dive Into Music and Cutting Room Politics with editor Matt Colonna

August 31, 2020


Music plays a huge part in editing. The right song or score can enhance the emotion of a scene with its lyrics, tone, or tempo. It can also help with pacing and rhythm by speeding up moments or slowing them down. But what do editors listen for when picking a musical track to use in their projects?

In episode 5 of the Hollywood Editing Mentor podcast, I talk with editor Matt Colonna (who is also a professional drummer) about his process for choosing music for his cuts and how his experience as a musician helps him edit. Matt also talks about how he communicates his ideas about music with directors, showrunners, and the music department. As someone who is very supportive of his peers and always looks out for his team, Matt also shares some ways we can better manage the politics of the post production environment, and talks about the importance of standing up for ourselves and protecting our Union rights.

Matthew V. Colonna is an American television and film editor whose recent works include Netflix’s Locke & Key, Narcos, Hulu’s Castle Rock and (currently) on FX’s The Old Man starring Jeff Bridges and John Lithgow—which will premiere in 2021. In 2010 he was nominated for outstanding single-camera picture editing for a drama series for Showtime’s Dexter and has as also received an HPA and OFTA nominations for his editing on Narcos and Fox’s The Following respectively.

Matt’s also got and extensive music background that ranges from writing original music for Dexter to laying down beats for the Black Eyed Peas to mixing it up as music supervisor on a few indies.  On the rare occasion, his band Sporto, will play live gigs is the LA area–but they’re usually writing music in the comforts of their air-conditioned studio (sparkoentertainment.com).

“As a twenty-four year editor, I’m honored to be a part of what Joaquin’s cooking up here and happy to share my experiences with ya’ll in hopes of cultivating an open forum to speak candidly about what we do for a living.”

– Matt Colonna

Original Music: “Apollo’s Haze” by Jesusdapnk
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