Sandy Pereira Reflects On Her Journey To Winning A Canadian Screen Award

DGC Ontario Picture Editor Sandy Pereira won her first Canadian Screen Award last week for Best Editing in a Television Movie or Mini-Series for Cardinal: Scott. Next week, she is up for a Canadian Cinema Editors award in the same category. We caught up with Sandy to ask about her win, why editing the award-winning Canadian thriller is a “dream job,” and about her experience working with David Cronenberg’s long-time Editor Ron Sanders.

How did it feel to win a CSA for Best Editing and to be nominated at the upcoming CCE Awards for your work on Cardinal: Scott?

It’s been a long journey for me. I started as a Post PA in 2002, and here I am almost 20 years later, honoured with these incredible nominations and awards. Obviously, no one does this work for the accolades, but it represents a recognition of years of hard work to get to this point.

Can you tell us more about your experience editing Cardinal: Scott

Getting to work on the last season of Cardinal was, frankly, a dream job. This particular episode was truly a challenge with so many narrative and emotional threads coming to a head in Scott, not just for this season but for the entire series. It was important to hit all the right notes. I spent many hours weaving these storylines together, collaborating with Director and EP Nathan Morlando and the Sienna Films team until we felt really confident we had the story we wanted to tell. I am very proud of this episode and my work on this season.

You’ve worked as a 1st Assistant Editor on many of David Cronenberg’s recent films; what has been your biggest takeaway from that experience? 

It was a thrill for me to work with such an iconic Director, but my biggest takeaway was working with Editor extraordinaire Ron Sanders! I learned so much working with Ron over about a 10 year period, mostly on Cronenberg’s films. Over that period, he encouraged me to cut, supported me when I was ready to move on from assisting and took my frantic calls for help when I didn’t know if I had the chops to make it as an Editor. Honestly, I don’t think I would be where I am today without his mentorship and friendship.

What do you love about working in Toronto? 

Toronto is my home. I’ve lived here most of my life and have become a part of this beautiful, creative community that has always been supportive and encouraging. I can’t imagine working anywhere else.

Where do you turn for inspiration when you need to get the creative juices flowing?

As an Editor, I find the biggest source of inspiration is the footage right in front of me. It’s always exciting to see how the scene was shot and how the Director’s vision is coming together. That’s usually enough to get the wheels turning. But when I am truly stuck, stepping away from the screen for a head-clearing walk, a coffee with a friend, or listening to some music, can help reset my brain to attack a scene from a different angle.

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