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Editor Peter E. Berger dies

Was Oscar nominated for 'Fatal Attraction'

Film and TV editor Peter E. Berger, who was Oscar nominated for his work on “Fatal Attraction” and cut several films in the “Star Trek” film franchise as well as “Alvin and the Chipmunks,” died Sept. 22 in Calabasas, Calif., after a long battle with leukemia. He was 67.

Berger’s long list of credits include “Mommie Dearest,” “Less Than Zero” and “Coach Carter,” as well as “Star Trek” pics “IV: The Voyage Home,” “V: The Final Frontier, “Generations” and “Insurrection.”

The editor worked repeatedly with director Thomas Carter, who helmed the 2005 Samuel L. Jackson film “Coach Carter.”

Berger began in the business as an assistant editor on films including “The Devil’s Rain” in the early ’70s. His first credits as editor included the animal-star documentary “It’s Showtime,” telepic “Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park,” “The Promise” and “Oh God! Part II.”

In addition to “Mommie Dearest,” “Fatal Attraction” and “Less Than Zero,” Berger’s ’80s efforts included Christopher Reeve starrer “Monsignor”; “First Monday in October”; “Memories of Me,” with Billy Crystal; Diane Keaton starrer “The Good Mother”; and a host of telepics.

Later efforts included Kenneth Branagh’s film “Dead Again”; “Hocus Pocus”; Eddie Murphy starrer “Metro”; “Red Corner,” toplining Richard Gere; “Save the Last Dance,” with Julia Stiles; and “Clockstoppers.”

He cut the first film in the “Alvin and the Chipmunks” franchise, released in 2007, and his last credit was on the 2009 TNT telepic “Gifted Hands: The Ben Carson Story.”

Berger’s father was film editor Fred Berger. He was drafted into the Army during the Vietnam War and served at the Armed Forces Korean Network in Seoul. He attended film school at UCLA and started in the business at NBC, at first editing commercials into TV shows.

Berger is survived by his wife, Carolyn; a son and a daughter; and five grandchildren.

A memorial service will take place in Vista, Calif., on Oct. 29. Donations may be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society

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