Command+Edit Podcast

The post-production podcast that goes beyond the desk


Can You Be Fired for Being Sick?: Episode 55

Nick Montgomery2 Comments
Can you be fired from your job for being sick or calling in a sick day

Can you be fired for being sick?

This started as a Twitter discussion from a question Scott Simmons posed earlier. There were many different opinions shared and it's not a simple yes/no question.

So we're here to discuss it further, what are your rights as a freelancer and how should you balance out the responsibilities of the job and your own health?

Do you think an assistant can be rightfully fired for calling in sick?

Do you have a story about coming down with a serious illness and having to push through on a deadline? Let us know in the comments about it.



[4:30] What have Josh and Nick been working on this week?...

[11:25] Scott Simmons (@EditBlog) asked his Twitter followers if his assistant editor should be replaced because he was sick and didn't show for work. It generated an interesting discussion on Twitter and inspired this week's episode. What is your opinion? Leave it in a comment below and we'll respond to it.

[16:04] The difference between a freelancer and a full-timer when it comes to sick days...



EDIT: Scott wrote on Pro Video Coalition after this Twitter discussion and included a follow-up to this story with the sick AE and how the rest of the project went. Worth noting is the tail section of the article where he gleans some advice for working for/with someone new for the first time. Check out the full article here for 6 tips for working as an assistant for someone new.


The Editing of Daredevil Season 2 : Cmd+Edit 042

Nick MontgomeryComment
Episode 42 of Command Edit Podcast Editing of Daredevil Season 2
"You cross over to that side of the line, you don't get to come back from that. Not ever."

In this episode we talk about Daredevil Season 2 on Netflix starring Charlie Cox returning as the title character.

The show is edited by Michael N. Knue, Monty DeGraff, Jonathan Chibnall and Jo Francis. (Any of which we would be thrilled to have on the show, FYI!).

We focus on the pacing of the story over the course of the season, whether we would have done anything had we worked on it and if the interweaving of storylines left any characters out in the cold.

SPOILER ALERT! Although a mild one. Just in case you haven't seen it.

If you have seen it, what point of the story did you feel were the strongest/weakest of the season? What would you have done differently if you were the editor?

Let us know on Twitter what you thought of it!


A Cut Above: Ten Women Who Epitomize the Art of Film Editing

A Reel Problem (and other bad jokes)

Nick MontgomeryComment
Hard disk old time big cost funny

I had two problems at the start of today and now they are SOLVED.

So today was Mission: Demo Reel for me. Plugging in archived drives, exporting high-res versions of projects to use, sorting everything into the project bin, scouting for music to use, etc.

My main problem…well there were two really:

  1. The downside of working on features is you have to wait until they are distributed before the producer gives you the OK to use the material publicly. Most of the features I've worked on the last 2 years are still awaiting release, so I can't show them.
  2. Most of my credits are horror, some are comedy. So do I make a show reel of both? Or focus on horror (which has the strongest of my work)? Don't want to pigeonhole myself as a horror editor, but it is where most of my work is visually the best quality.

And if I make separate reels I start down the slippery slope of making a different reel for each genre, format, flavour…and I don't really like the idea of having many separate reels in the first place.

So my solution to both? One show reel that highlights all of my recent work WITH a call-to-action at the end to ask me about my PRIVATE REEL that will include material that I cannot show publicly just yet.

What do you think? Would you find a different way to represent your work? How do you decide on the style of your reel?

P.S. Did I mention I really, really hate making reels?

I hate hard drives like I hate you

Get the Most Out of Post Conferences : Cmd+Edit 037

Nick MontgomeryComment
Episode 37 of Command Edit Podcast Get the most out of post production conferences

We're having a blast over at the Command+Edit FB Group!

Pop in and see what's going on. Discussions on post production, meet new editors, get your questions answered or be a smartie-pants and answer someone else's.



Do you attend conferences on your own time or your company's time? Do you feel like you are benefitting a lot from the ones you go to?

A little later than usual this week (because Nick traded his editing-at-desk job for a week to work on set of a horror feature) this episode is about all of those post-production conferences that are held throughout the year.

NAB, SXSW, SIGGRAPH and IBC are among the bigger ones you've likely heard of but there are many, many others that you could be attending. If you're antisocial or not a networking person you may not attend many right now, but you should because they can help you out in a lot of ways: expand your network of other post professionals, pick up new skills to boost your editing game, stay on top of new announcements and emerging technology and cement your position (both online and offline) as an expert in your field.

Being an introvert at conferences and networking yourself

We list off some conferences that are worth attending, how to create a "plan of attack" to get the most of your time spent there, create a hitlist of people you want to meet, and other ways you can increase the returned value of getting out to more cons.


Connect with Command Edit Podcast on social media

Support the podcast by leaving us a review if you like what you're hearing.

How to Set Up Your 2016 Goals : Cmd+Edit 028

Nick MontgomeryComment
Episode 28 of Command Edit Podcast Goal Setting for 2016 New Year as an Entrepreneur or Freelancer
"The new year stands before us, like a chapter in a book, waiting to be written. We can help write that story by setting goals."

Around this time of year you start thinking of your New Year's resolutions. Actually...let's be're most likely thinking about how bogus New Year's resolutions are.


They are there for people to set, attempt for the month of January and then completely abandon without guilt. When's the last time you a heard from a friend of yours who actually saw one of their resolution through to the end of the year?

But setting goals for yourself is a very important part of learning and improvement. And there are ways you can establish your goals so that you are more likely to succeed at them.

In this episode we talk about a few ways that you can set yourself up for success with your own goals for the next year. They are simple but very essential to getting yourself to the next level.


Also as we end this year, we can't thank our listeners enough! (That would be you).

This podcast started as a shared goal between Josh and myself, as we mention in the episode, and along the way has turned its focus to the goals of the listeners.

What do you want to learn about post-production that will help you in your career?

What other ways are you looking to improve your physical and mental health?

What else would help give you that boost that you need to become more confident with yourself?

We have a lot planned for the Command+Edit Podcast for 2016. Listen to the episode to find out what our goals are and how we plan to achieve them.

Thanks to the kind folk over at Art of the Guillotine for putting our Star Wars episode front and centre on their page. Check out AotG for tons of resources on the filmmaking industry updated daily.


Share them with us by tweeting @CommandEdit. Literally takes 3 seconds using this handy button below. Once you'd tweeted it, you're one step closer to achieving it. And we will then hound you with progress updates.


Never say "Good Enough"

Nick MontgomeryComment
Lazy editor at desk sleeping

Obsessing over perfection is an exercise in futility, but striving for excellence is another matter entirely.

To be excellent at your work is to be passionate about growing your skills and consistently improving quality. But it's when this passion abates that we find this sneaky phrase enter our minds when signing off on a project:

"Meh, good enough."

I hate it when I catch myself saying those words out loud. To me it means "I see how I could do better, but I won't." Granted there needs to be point when you wrap it up and deliver it, otherwise you run the risk of perfection paralysis. But there are factors that cause you to lose that effort you often have, that striving for becoming better and pushing your own limits. And if you can recognize these factors you can avoid them. Then you stop being satisfied with "good enough" and start surprising both yourself and your clients.

Behold, here are some of those factors that you can watch out for and dodge:


  • Be passionate about the project

If your heart isn't truly into the content, then you're not going to have an emotional connection with your edit. And if you don't have that emotional connection then do you think viewers will? I'm not saying that you should only say yes to the jobs that really excite you and speak to your passionate side. We all have to take jobs now and then more for the paycheque than the personal connection we have to the subject. The trick is finding that connection with content that you never thought you could have before.

Finding something about the job that excites you or drives you to tell the story to the best of your abilities. If that passion isn't there, then what will motivate you to do push yourself? And if you're not that proud of your work, what are the odds you'll want to add it to your portfolio and show it off to prospectful clients?


  • Keep your body happy and fuelled

Your attitude towards your work is directly affected by the state of your mind and body. Right now how is your posture? Are you standing or sitting? When's the last time you ate? And was it healthy food that your body likes or junk food that gave you a sugar spike? How many hours of good sleep did you get last night? It's no secret that if you are underslept, hungry, irritable, and/or out of shape then you are putting yourself in a negative space to do your work. And that negativity affects the quality of your work.

When you're giving your body what it needs, you're setting yourself up to do your best work. Know what food your body needs, know how much sleep you need to function and know how to keep your body and mind active and healthy. Speaking of knowing what you need to get the job done...


  • Get what you need to get the job done

There's a very good reason why I restrict the number of lo/no pay jobs I say yes to. Obviously you need to make money to keep the lights on and the hard drives spinning. But stop me if this sounds familiar: You've said yes to a friend who asked for a favour working on his/her latest passion project thinking it would be good karma. Hell, it might serve nothing more than a good opportunity to hone your skills. Once you get into the meat of the work however, the reality that you're not getting paid for your time sets in.

You may have to say no to another opportunity because you're already committed to this. That makes you bitter. You don't want to do a shite job for your friend, but you also don't feel like going above and beyond for them either. Is the edit perfect? No. But are you willing to put the effort in to get it there at your own expense? That would be a hard no.

So even it is a friend (or maybe just someone looking for a deal) you need to demand what you feel is worth your time to do the job right. Otherwise the quality will surely suffer.

*On a side note, if you require a break every hour to stand and stretch, have specific dietary requests when meals are provided, or know that you can't function on less than 5 hours of sleep, don't be ashamed for one second to explain this to your client/employer. If they can't understand that you need some of these things in order to do good work, then they are not worth working for. That being said, expect a hard time finding an employer who understands a need for 10 hours of beauty sleep per night.

  • Accepting that you're not skilled enough

Sucker Punch quote

If you've convinced yourself that you don't possess the skill level needed to do a great job, then you've already set yourself up for mediocrity. The reality is that even experts encounter jobs that require them to research, learn, practice and push themselves to deliver outstanding results.

If you tell yourself that you can't reach the top of the summit when you start climbing, you're just preparing an excuse for yourself for when you fail. Be realistic when you set goals for yourself, but make sure those goals require you to reach further to achieve them.

Ever caught yourself settling for "good enough" in your work? What do you do to get yourself out of that funk? Share this article with someone you think could use it. Leave a comment below on any one of our social media thingies.