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American Cinema Editors

Founded in 1950, the American Cinema Editors, ACE, is a honorary society of motion picture editors dedicated to the advancement of the conviction that the editor is one of the significant authors of a film. Film editors are voted into membership on the basis of their professional achievements, their dedication to the education of others and their commitment to the craft of editing.

The objectives and purposes of ACE are to advance the art and science of the editing profession; to increase the entertainment value of motion pictures by attaining artistic pre-eminence and scientific achievement in the creative art of editing; to bring into close alliance those editors who desire to advance the prestige and dignity of the editing profession.

The American Cinema Editors became a non-profit corporation under the laws of the State of California on May 29, 1951.

ACE was the original idea of two Paramount Studio film editors, Jack Ogilvie and Warren Low, who arranged for an historic meeting of representative editors to discuss starting the organization. It was held at the Masquers Club in Hollywood on October 26, 1950 and, besides Ogilvie and Low, was attended by Frank Gross, Richard Heermance, George Amy, Folmar Blangsted, James Clark,  William Hornbeck, Fred Knudtson, Fredrick Smith, Richard Van Enger, Hugh Winn and William Lyon.

A Charter Membership meeting was held on November 28, 1950 attended by 108 of the industry's top film editors followed by the first General Membership meeting on January 9, 1951 at which a name for the society was adopted when Donn Hayes suggested "American Cinema Editors." Members are identified on screen credits with "A.C.E." following their names.

From its inception the ACE membership was committed to the encouragement of mutually-beneficial dialogue with other members of the motion picture industry and to educating the general public.

The first of several seminars, known as the "ACE Roundtable," was inaugurated in 1951 to discuss problems shared with other industry groups.

A panel discussion on "Better Pictures Through Creative Cooperation" was held on June 5, 1951 at the Masquers Club moderated by Fredrick Smith with guest speakers: Ray Rennahan, President, American Society of Cinematographers; Paul Groese, President, Art Directors Society; Delmer Daves, President, Screen Directors Guild; Ronald Reagan, President, Screen Actors Guild; Karl Tunberg, President, Screen Writers Guild; and William Perlberg, President, Screen Producers Guild.

Beginning as early as 1951, a speaker's platform headed by James E. Newcom was formed to give lectures to cinema classes at universities.

Now called the ACE Visiting Editor Program, some of the members who have lectured or taught classes during the past few years are: former Presidents James Blakely, George Grenville and Michael Hoggan, Tom Rolf, former Vice President Bernard Balmuth and ACE members Donn Cambern, Anne Coates, Mark Goldblatt, Tina Hirsch, Michael Hoe, Evan Lottman, William Reynolds and Ralph Winters.

In addition to in-person lectures, ACE has produced two films, "Basic Principle of Film Editing" and "Interpretations and Values of Film Editing," which are still available to educational facilities.

In May, 1951 the society has issued its official magazine, CinemaEditor. Beginning with a four to eight-page publication with limited distribution, the size and format is currently enlarged to about 40 pages and is mailed to wide and varied group of subscribers.

On March 14, 1951 the first annual ACE Awards dinner honoring the nominees for the Film Editing Award given by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences was held at the Beverly Hills Hotel.

George Murphy hosted the ceremonies, Dore Schary was the keynote speaker, Frank Capra presented the awards, Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin entertained. These awards for Academy nominees were held annually through 1961.

In 1962, the society decided that editors were the best judges of their peers' ability and created the annual ACE Awards.

In 1965, the statue nicknamed "Eddie" was given for the first time. Until 1965, the winners received plaques. Since then the presentations have come to be referred to as THE ANNUAL ACE EDDIE AWARDS.

In 1973, ACE started the Student Editing Competition, which nominees were also included in the event. SEC is available to students throughout the continental United States.


The eligibility for active membership includes specific standards of qualification, such as number of years served as an accredited editor, quality of credits and personal caliber. An applicant for membership must be sponsored by at least two active members, have at least 60 months of editing experience on Features or Television, and must be approved by the Board of Directors and then accepted by the general membership.

Classifications of membership

Active members are those who are actively employed as editors;

Affiliate members are those persons in executive or supervisory positions in the industry;

Life members are those who have retired and been voted a Life membership by the Board of Directors;

Honorary members are those non-editors whom the Board of Directors has determined to have particularly distinguished themselves in the industry.

American Cinema Editors, Inc. - 100 Universal City Plaza, Verna Fields Bldg. 2282, Universal City, California. Tel: (818) 777-2900, Fax: (818) 733-5023




ACE Eddie Awards prize

The 58th Annual ACE Eddie Awards winners and nominees





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