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William Austin (film editor)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

William Austin
William Nelson Austin

(1903-01-28)January 28, 1903
DiedDecember 28, 1993(1993-12-28) (aged 90)
OccupationFilm editor

William Nelson Austin (January 28, 1903 – December 28, 1993) was a Canadian-American film editor.[1] He was nominated for an Academy Award in the category Best Film Editing for the film Flat Top.[2]


"Bill" Austin began his career in 1928 as a freelance film editor, usually working for independent producers of westerns. One of his frequent employers was the notoriously low-budget filmmaker Robert J. Horner.

Austin's fortunes improved in 1936 when his native Canada passed a quota law, requiring that a percentage of motion pictures released in Canada must include Canadian personnel. Columbia Pictures complied with this requirement by sending Canadian-born crew members to studios north of the border. Austin's first editorial assignment was Secret Patrol, a Charles Starrett outdoor adventure. Austin remained in Canada for Columbia-sponsored projects through 1939, when the quota arrangement lapsed.

He resumed his career in Hollywood at the low-budget PRC studio. His handling of Universal's Sherlock Holmes mystery The Spider Woman (released in 1944) gave the film unusual suspense. It won him an assignment at Monogram Pictures, where his work on the Marjorie Weaver-Peter Cookson mystery Shadow of Suspicion (1944) earned him a permanent place at the studio. Austin became one of Monogram's dependables, editing comedies, musicals, mysteries, westerns, and melodramas. He was especially proficient with the studio's Bowery Boys comedies, editing 33 of the 48 films in the long-running series. When Monogram became Allied Artists, Austin remained with the company and edited dozens more features through 1964.

Austin also worked in television, as staff editor for The Abbott and Costello Show, The Barbara Stanwyck Show, Ben Casey, and Tarzan. He retired at age 65, after the Tarzan series, but returned to edit a low-budget outdoor adventure, Legend of the Northwest, in 1978.

William Austin died on December 28, 1993, in Los Angeles, California, at the age of 90.[3]

Selected filmography


  1. ^ "Kay Signed". Daily News. Los Angeles, California. April 8, 1946. p. 15. Retrieved October 10, 2021 – via Closed access icon
  2. ^ "The 25th Academy Awards (1953) Nominees and Winners". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Retrieved October 10, 2021.
  3. ^ "William Austin". Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles, California. January 2, 1994. p. 88. Retrieved October 10, 2021 – via Closed access icon

External links

This page was last edited on 13 March 2024, at 17:57
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