Tom Rolf, Oscar-Winning Editor of ‘The Right Stuff,’ Dies at 82

Tom Rolf, Oscar-Winning Editor of 'The

Tom Rolf, who shared a best editing Oscar for his work on 1983 astronaut epic “The Right Stuff” and also edited “Taxi Driver,” “New York, New York,” “Black Sunday,” “Heaven’s Gate,” “Nine ½ Weeks,” “Heat” and “The Horse Whisperer,” among many other films, has died. He was 82.

Rolf shared his 1984 Oscar for the monumental effort required to edit “The Right Stuff” with Glenn Farr, Lisa Fruchtman, Stephen A. Rotter and Douglas Stewart.

Also in 1984, Rolf won an Eddie from the American Cinema Editors for his work on “WarGames.”

“Tom Rolf, ACE, was not only a prolific film editor but an integral and beloved member of our organization,” the American Cinema Editors said in a statement. “Over the years he served ACE in many capacities demonstrating a deep commitment to mentoring others, illuminating the editing craft and sharing his wisdom and experience with students and colleagues. His impressive body of work and his humanity influenced many of his peers leaving a singular legacy that will endure.”

He worked on a number of films for Martin Scorsese, even though that director is usually associated with the editor Thelma Schoonmaker.

Rolf had most recently worked on the critically lauded 2008 Russian film “Admiral,” directed by Andrey Kravchuk, and the TV series that subsequently grew out of the film.

He received a Career Achievement Award from the American Cinema Editors in 2003.

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  1. Joe Dunn says:

    I knew Tom fresh out of the Marines when we began surfing together in Malibu in 1953. We reconnected a few years ago–a great guy-learned of his death from my son in law, Darryl Bates, an editor. Condolences to his family, Joe Dunn.

  2. Amy Holden jones says:

    One of the very best. A true magician. Years ago as Scorsese’s assistant, I saw his first cut of the “You talking to me?” scene in Taxi Driver. It remains one of the great cinematic memories of my life. RIP

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