Gabriela Fisher: So right off the bat I want to say that everyone here at Scratch Cinema has been following your work and we’re huge fans! To start us off could you tell us about yourself and your work?
Clementine Narcisse: Thank you so much! I’ve been editing since I was about nine (I ran a film review youtube channel when I was about 10-11 where I both grew a knack for editing and developed my love of film). When I started making twitter edits early this year, It was both just for myself -but also I think it’s very important to highlight underrepresented groups of people (i.e black women, female directors, etc.). It’s very fun and also helps inspire me as a young black girl who wants to go into the film industry.
GF: Do you feel you’ve had to work harder or prove your worth because you’re a black woman?
CN: 100%. Not even just a black woman, but also a trans woman as well. It’s really intimidating to want to go into an industry where people like me are so vastly underrepresented, so I really try to make my work as absolutely good as it could be, you know? Sometimes I feel like if I’m not at the top of my game then no one would care the slightest about my work, and it’s pretty draining. I’ve kind of made it out to be a motivator when I’m working on whatever project that I’m going to release like this video *has* to be the best thing I’ve ever done or else people won’t care anymore.
GF: Exactly. The disparity between what is expected of men vs women is insane and pretty recently your decade in film edit blew up, has the reaction been positive? Do you feel like it has influenced the edits you’ve made since or the pressure of editing?
CN: The attention has been absolutely crazy! I’m still getting people congratulating me on its success in person when it dropped almost a month ago. I’ve been getting way more attention than I’m used to, but in a good way! It’s also led to so many great notices and connections from people within the industry which is also really exciting. There is a little pressure now that I have a lot more people straight up watching my content, but what really motivates me because my work is starting to lead to possible opportunities in the field I wanna work in.
GF: It’s really inspiring to see an amazing independent creative finally get the recognition they deserve! Earlier you mentioned you started editing at a young age, are you fully self-taught or have you had any professional training/help?
CN: I taught everything I know to myself! It took me 6 years to get good at editing so I guess it was a fun way to pass the time growing up which also turned out to become a genuine hobby that produced work that people enjoyed!
GF: Have there been specific movies or people that have influenced your edits?
CN: Baby Driver is a big one, that whole movie was built on this super-specific and effective editing style that had a rhythm to it that I really resonated with. More recently Midsommar had a lot of great editing tricks that geeked me out. The usage of audio and timing is so perfect there, it’s certainly influenced my content as of late.
GF: It’s great that films continue to inspire, especially movies like Midsommar and Baby Driver that were made by people so obviously passionate about filmmaking. Do you plan on going to a film school? If so how do you think film school will benefit you?
CN: Well I would love to go to school for something I’m super passionate for and filmmaking/writing/editing do fall into that bubble, so yes film school is something that I’m very interested in! I feel like I need to get a better understanding of more of the technicalities of the filmmaking process and also, I’m not that smart and I could use the extra knowledge haha!
GF: Last but not least I want to ask if you believe there will be a time when women will be seen as equals to men in the film industry
CN: Girl there better be. I’m tired of this! Equality and a diverse spectrum are so important especially in film and all of art in general. This shouldn’t be a problem in the first place but you know Hollywood! I’m so happy there’s starting to be a change though!
To keep up with Clementine and her (stunning!) work, you can find her on Twitter @Clemmie. For business inquiries, you can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.