Back to top

#TCCFreelancer James Moriarty – Editor

Creative Editor James Moriarty has worked on a wide range of high profile TV shows; he is currently working on “Who’s Doing the Dishes” for ITV and will be returning to X Factor shortly. It is more than likely when you have sat down to watch TV on a Saturday evening you will be watching something James has worked on. He is able to work to any deadline with a fast turnaround and has a great eye for detail. But these are not skills James has learnt overnight, so have you ever wondered how do you even become an Editor? Is it important to have studied the industry or craft at college or University or just head out into the industry and learn on the job? How does James keep up to date with the forever changing editing software? When I had a chat with James this is what he said…

For people who don’t know what it is like to be an Editor, James explains it well. “It varies quite a bit from job to job but basically I turn raw footage into watchable television, whether it is hours of people living in the Big Brother house or a multi-cam live performance on the X-Factor. There is no such thing as a typical working day: some jobs are fairly structured; some are crazy and chaotic; you never really know what any given day is going to bring.  The hardest and most rewarding shows are the ones that are a quick turnaround, when you don’t have much time to make them decent. Also, the highest profile shows like X-Factor have extra pressure attached due to the number of people who watch them.”

Inside the Big Brother Edit
Inside the Big Brother Edit

With so many people each year trying to get their foot in the elusive media door, James actually didn’t know he wanted to become an Editor until he first tried his hand at editing at college. This is where he found his niche and realised he had a natural ability for editing. When he first entered the media world he only ever saw the editing side of the industry and never did anything else. With only editing experience, he knew it was the right and only path for him. What advice would James offer if he could to people wanting to enter the industry as an Editor? James said “It would be to have knowledge of how a post-production house works, but most importantly you must be willing to learn on the job and put in the hours by learning from other Editors or even using the equipment after hours”.

Editing software is always changing and with new updates and new software appearing each year, James finds that out of all the software Avid is the most user-friendly for him. James said, “I first used Avid 13 years ago and it has stayed fairly similar since the beginning and it is still the standard software used in the industry today. Sometimes other software’s such as Final Cut might pop up on a job, so there is a tiny bit of panic as I have to learn something new!”

With the forever changing media industry, we all wonder what path television, video and film are going to take. Editing is such an important part of making such compelling and watchable programmes and James thinks the way we view content will change. “In 10-20 years’ time we will move away from television and more shows will be online or on streaming services, but I don’t think the actual principles of editing will change very much.”

And finally a question everyone would be intrigued to ask….if James could invite anyone to a dinner party who would be his choice? He picked some great ones! “I’d pick the Head of The BBC so I can try and persuade them not to axe BBC3 and Kanye West so I can tell him to sit down and be quiet.”

If you’re interested in hiring a quick thinking, fast turn around and incredibly talented Editor that is James Moriarty – please contact The Crewing Company on 020 8525 4844 or