Multi-hyphenate is longtime ACE officer
The editor, producer and director began his career in the mailroom at Warner Bros. and eventually became an editing apprentice and was later hired as an assistant under Gene Milford for the film “On the Waterfront.”
“I was ready,” Roberts said. “I’d deliver my letters as fast as possible and go hang out in the cutting room.”
Roberts earned his first feature editing credit on Richard Pryor’s “Greased Lightning” and his since worked with the esteemed filmmakers and producers including Francis Ford Coppola, Robert Evans and Dustin Hoffman.
The honoree said he made the transition from editing to producing in the mid-90s while working on the CBS drama “Early Edition.”
Now retired, Roberts served as supervising producer for the hit series “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit” for much of the last decade but said he had the most fun while working on multiple aspects of “Early Edition.”
“I started off as an editor and ended up as supervising producer, plus I got to direct on it,” Roberts explained. “It was a fantasy, so we actually had to go in and tell the future.”
Though his career took him along many different avenues in film and TV, Roberts said editing is still his favorite job.
“There’s nothing more fun than putting a show in its first cut,” Roberts said. “You’re trying to solve a puzzle. You’ve got a script and you’ve got a film, but they don’t always match. You’re trying to figure out what everybody wants.”