ACE International Affiliate Member Category
2nd Qtr, 2019
Following the ACE Board’s unanimous decision to adopt the new membership category of ACE International Affiliate Member, the hard work for the International Relations Committee began. We realized that you can’t just apply the same rules for prospective international members as we use for the general category of affiliate membership.
Like the ACE membership committee that interviews and recommends new members to the ACE Board of Directors, a similar procedure needs to be established for international members. In order to do this the International Relations Committee needs to recruit active ACE members who also believe in the global expansion of ACE. (Hint, hint!)
Since Hollywood and Los Angeles are still the central hub for the motion picture industry a lot of members and leaders of our international sister organizations have professional links here.
We’ve met many of them to discuss our plans and their thoughts about how we could and should work together. We’ve met with the principals of our Australian, Canadian and Dutch sister organizations. And recently, Isaac Itzik, president of the Israeli Editors Guild, visited Los Angeles. We discussed many things during our 90-minute meeting but the main topic was how the ascent of streaming services like Netflix, Amazon and Apple would impact our work and the industry as a whole.
Streaming shows in particular seem to vigorously transcend the traditional boundaries of national film industry standards, not only with international distribution but also investment in productions in motion picture markets like Israel. They seem to recognize that national content is not limited to the borders of a particular country. The international success of Bollywood productions is also made possible because there are large expat Indian communities in countries all around the world.
The Nigerian Nollywood productions serve a large swath of the African continent and you can imagine the revenue from untapped markets of the Mandarin language and culture will expand. Itzik says that with the interest of Netflix in the small Israeli market, its industry has started to realize that there might be additional markets for Israeli motion pictures for the small and big screen if you consider the Jewish diaspora around the world.
Original Israeli series are already available on Netflix in the U.S. and although Netflix is very secretive about viewership numbers, the fact that they put it up on their roster indicates that there is interest. Itzik feels that these developments make it especially important to join hands with ACE so we can work together to keep the editors’ creative integrity in the spotlight. An alliance with ACE also is important for him to improve the standing of editors in Israel as an important creative force in the production process.
Too often directors and producers think that editors are merely operators of the editing computers. He pointed out that there’s now the credit, ‘director of editing,’ like there’s the director of photography and camera operator on the set. When we unite globally and exchange our experiences we can work together toward elevating how editors are looked upon as an important creative force in the motion picture production and post-production process.
We also need to find out what the special needs are for our new international members and how we can explore, accommodate and create new venues here and maybe abroad that can cater to these needs. We’ve got a very exciting time ahead of us and we’ll work hard to make this global expansion a successful one with the help of our foreign sisters and brothers. The respect that editors deserve for their creative endeavors is a global issue that we need to face together.
Norman Hollyn, ACE