Ron Sanders: Collaborating With Viggo Mortensen On Falling

Picture Editor and long time David Cronenberg collaborator Ron Sanders speaks about Viggo Mortensen’s new film Falling.

Since beginning their partnership on 1979’s Fast Company, DGC Ontario Picture Editor Ron Sanders and Director David Cronenberg have worked on 19 films, often with long time collaborator, Production Designer Carol Spier. After making three films with Cronenberg, A History of Violence (2005), Eastern Promises (2007) and A Dangerous Method (2011) it was only natural that actor and now Director Viggo Mortensen would shoot his first feature, Falling in Toronto and collaborate with Ron and Carol. We caught up with Ron ahead of Falling’s Sundance premiere next week to discuss this long collaboration in the making.

You have a history with actor and now Director Viggo Mortensen, can you speak more on what it was like working together again? And to be part of the journey of Viggo becoming a Director?

I have cut several films in which Viggo appeared. He is a great actor who prepares intensely. It has always been a privilege and a delight to cut his performances and also great fun.

Lance Henriksen and Viggo Mortensen appear in a scene from Falling by Viggo Mortensen.
Lance Henriksen and Viggo Mortensen appear in Falling by Viggo Mortensen, an official selection of the Premieres program at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. Courtesy of Sundance Institute. All photos are copyrighted and may be used by press only for the purpose of news or editorial coverage of Sundance Institute programs. Photos must be accompanied by a credit to the photographer and/or ‘Courtesy of Sundance Institute.’ Unauthorized use, alteration, reproduction or sale of logos and/or photos is strictly prohibited.

On his on-going creative collaboration with DGC Ontario Production Designer Carol Spier

Working with Carol has always been wonderful. Looking at the dailies every morning to see what she and her people have done is always a delightful surprise. Sometimes miracles happened.

Are there any challenges in editing a film where the Director is also one of the lead actors?

Working with Viggo as both actor and director presented some challenges. This film is very personal to Viggo and he had very strong ideas of how he wanted things to be. In this age of digital cameras it is not unusual to restart a scene without cutting. Often many times in a take. This happened a lot when Viggo the Director would stop a take and Viggo the actor would have to pick up his own performance. That he could do this many, many times is a testament to his talent and commitment. It did produce a bit of work for us in the cutting room though.

I am very proud to have been a part of making Viggo’s film.

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