HOLLYWOOD Journey to Hollywood: Shannon Baker Davis inspires students with...

Journey to Hollywood: Shannon Baker Davis inspires students with life as TV, film editor

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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Planning for a successful future can be tough when there are so many options. But an Augusta woman with ties to Hollywood came home to inspire local kids.

Project Runway, Top Chef and even From Scratch on Netflix. Whether you love movies and film or not, you have probably seen something Shannon Baker Davis has touched. The award winning TV and film editor made her journey to Hollywood from Augusta. And she returned home to share her pathway with students in Richmond County.

“I danced for a long time. I played the viola for seven or eight years. I helped out with the theater program,” said TV and Film Editor Shannon Baker Davis, who spoke exclusively with NewsChannel 6’s Renetta DuBose.

Before she hit the red carpet, Davis grew up in Augusta, Georgia. The Richmond County School System student attended A. Brian Merry Elementary and is a 1996 graduate of Davidson Fine Arts.

Now, she’s credited as editor of Disney’s latest film, Prom Pact.

“It’s prom season at this high school and this senior in high school wants to get into Harvard and she kind of poo poos proms and she’s just ready to get out of high school and get to college where everything matters,” she said.

Davis got a taste of the film world while completing her honors thesis at Howard University in Washington, D.C. Already thinking of Hollywood, she shot, wrote and edited a short documentary. Also while in college, she completed internships at PBS and UPN in DC. And it started with an office job.

She explained, “The woman that was my boss, her husband was an editor and he was editing for this place called Georgetown Post and they did a lot of commercials. They did a lot of political ads because they were in DC. They did a lot of informercials, like the Time Life Sounds of the 70s that you watch at 1 o’clock in the morning. They did a lot of those.”

Those internships solidified her love of film and locked in her first editor job before graduating college. There she learned AVID, the program she still uses for her popular shows today. But she told us it was her masters program at American Film Institute in Los Angeles where she transitioned from infomercials to TV and feature films Hollywood style.

“They call them act breaks where it’s like a cliffhanger of an act,” Davis told us. “I knew how to make compelling story act breaks. I used all of those skills to become a really good reality show editor.”

From unscripted shows such as Kathy Griffin’s My Life on the D-List, which won an Emmy, to scripted shows such as Queen Sugar, Grown-ish, Impeachment: American Crime Story and the 2020 film The Photograph staring LaKeith Stanfield and Issa Rae. Davis edited her way into Hollywood’s best, The Academy.

“And I’m in the editing, Film Editor’s Branch,” she said adding that she was inviting in 2022. “And I am pretty sure 1 of 4 four black women.”

Despite a recent slow down from the writers and actors strikes, she continues doing what she loves, even writing her own work. And shares this advice for students wanting to also be in the industry.

“To know your craft,” she said. “Know the people that are doing it. Study as much as you can and tell people about it.”

Davis also mentors people through ACE, American Cinema Editors.

There’s so much more to come from Davis. She’s wrapping up a Marvel – Disney Plus streaming series set to be released next year.

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