The fluid workflow of digital editing is creating a faster, cheaper and — according to Angus Wall and Kirk Baxter, co-editors of “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,” — better way of making movies.

What used to be visual effects tasks, such as compositing, can now be handled in the editing bay faster and more cheaply, and the shots can go right back into the cut.

Digital tools also empower the editors to grab their favorite elements from multiple takes — an actor’s line reading from one take, another actor’s entrance from another — and combine them. The result, hopefully, is better than any take that happened on the day.

“When we get into that final level of detail, everything starts to sing,” Baxter says. “There’s an accumulation of minute details that help an editor give clarity … that ultimately creates a better film.”

Eye on the Oscars: Vfx, Sound & Editing
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