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This week we 'Sit Down With' MSE Editor Phil Hignett

30 August 2017

This week we 'Sit Down With' the talented Editor Phil Hignett of MSE. We're delighted to share his reel too. So, why not take a few moments to read about what makes the man behind all these impressive edits tick..

Phil Hignett's ReelPhil Hignett's Reel

1. How did you initially begin editing?
I actually wanted to become an accountant because my mum said they make good money. But after a long, monotonous, soul-destroying term, I decided I’d rather be happy and poor than bored and rich. Hence editing.

2. What does your job entail?
Editing is like a jigsaw puzzle. You know what it’s supposed to look like, but there are always far too many pieces. Editing is about finding the best pieces to go in the right places.

3.What skills do you need to be a good editor?
These days anyone can edit, but you need taste to be a good editor.

4.What’s your favourite part of your job?
Going on location, cutting from playback and presenting a rough cut immediately after wrap. It’s hard, intense, but undeniably valuable.

5. If there were one thing you could change about your job what would it be?
Time. There is always too little, or too much.

6. Who influences and inspires your work and why?
Alfred Hitchcock for storytelling, Larry David for comedy and Brent White for editing.

7. What do you think you’d be doing if you weren’t an editor?
Playing basketball, or hand modelling.

8. What projects are you most proud of?
There is an EE ad I did with Jeff Labbè. We shot in Chile over 3 years ago and still remains one of my favourite ads. It’s definitely got a little Hitchcock in there. “Don’t give away the ending – it’s the only one we have!”

Another one that I’m very proud of is a Smart Energy ad I did with Jim Archer. It’s smaller in scale, but just as funny. The improv was so good and so vast that we were really spoilt for choice. It resulted in so many different, equally hilarious versions. The pride comes from ultimately finding the best pieces to go in the right places.

9. What are your latest projects? Recently I did a KFC spot with Ben Taylor which coincided with the launch of Game of Thrones season 7. I was on set for that one and we thankfully met the tight deadline. It’s a simple idea, executed perfectly and now has over 12 million people watching it, sharing it and presumably liking it.

Also, I just finished off the third Ryan Reynolds ad for BT. Nick and Jake are two of the coolest directors around and the ads have turned into a nice little trilogy. More Cornetto than Dollars.

10. Lastly after a long day of editing what do you like to spend your spare time getting up to?
Drinking red wine, eating cheese or laughing with mates. Usually all three.