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ACE Honors J.J. Abrams, Janet Ashikaga and Thelma Schoonmaker

American Cinema Editors will bestow the awards at its annual fete on January 27

J. J. Abrams
ACE Filmmaker of the Year Award Winner
The uber-successful and prolific producer-director-writer-composer’s DNA is all over some of film and TV’s biggest hits of the past 15 years, including “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” “Star Trek,” “Super 8,” ABC’s “Alias” and “Lost,” Fox’s “Fringe,” CBS’ “Person of Interest,” and HBO’s “Westworld.” Born in New York and raised in L.A., Abrams got his start in TV and co-created his first series, WB’s “Felicity,” in 1998 with collaborator and long-time friend Matt Reeves. Next, Abrams created and executive-produced “Alias” for ABC, and co-created and exec-produced ABC’s “Lost” with Damon Lindelof. The show won him Emmys for directing a drama series for the “Lost” pilot as well as drama series for “Lost.” He also received Emmy noms for his “Alias” and “Lost” pilot scripts. The multi-faceted creative composed the theme music for “Alias,” “Fringe,” “Lost,” and “Person of Interest,” and co-wrote the “Felicity” theme song. He directed his first feature, “Mission: Impossible III,” in 2006, followed by 2009’s “Star Trek,” 2011’s “Super 8” (written and directed by Abrams, and co-produced with Steven Spielberg), 2013’s “Star Trek Into Darkness,” and the recent “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” Abrams produced 2011’s “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol,” 2015’s “Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation,” and last year’s “10 Cloverfield Lane” and “Star Trek Beyond.”

Janet Ashikaga
ACE Career Achievement Honoree
A 10-time Emmy Award nominee and four-time winner, Ashikaga has edited such high-profile TV series as “Seinfeld,” “Sports Night,” “My Name is Earl,” and “The West Wing.” Her recent work includes “Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior” and “Franklin & Bash.” Ashikaga is also a seven-time ACE Eddie Award nominee. In addition to her editorial work, Ashikaga has dedicated much of her time to educational programs on behalf of the editing community and ACE.

Thelma Schoonmaker
ACE Career Achievement Honoree
Schoonmaker is a seven-time Academy Award nominee and three-time winner for “Raging Bull,” “The Aviator,” and “The Departed” — all helmed by longtime collaborator Martin Scorsese.  She has been nominated for the ACE Eddie Award eight times and won four times.  Her work with Scorsese goes back almost five decades and has also yielded “Who’s That Knocking on My Door,” “Street Scenes,” “The Last Waltz,” “The Last Temptation of Christ,” “Shutter Island,” “The Wolf of Wall Street,” and “Silence.” The New York Film Critics Circle recently honored Schoonmaker for her editing career.

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