Barry M. Malkin (born October 26, 1938) is an American film editor with about 30 film credits. He is noted for his extended collaboration with director Francis Ford Coppola, having edited most of Coppola's films from 1969-1997. In particular, Malkin worked with Coppola on four of the component and compilation films of the Godfather Trilogy, although he was not involved in the original 1972 film. Roger Ebert has written of The Godfather Part II, which Malkin edited, "... why is it a "great movie"? Because it must be seen as a piece with the unqualified greatness of "The Godfather." The two can hardly be considered apart ("Part III" is another matter). When the characters in a film take on a virtual reality for us, when a character in another film made 30 years later can say "The Godfather" contains all the lessons in life you need to know, when an audience understands why that statement could be made, a film has become a cultural bedrock."
Malkin worked as an apprentice to editor Dede Allen on the film America, America (directed by Elia Kazan-1962), and became acquainted with editor Aram Avakian, who was an occasional visitor. Malkin became Avakian's assistant editor on Lilith (directed by Robert Rossen-1964). Malkin got his first credits as a full editor on The Patty Duke Show (TV) and on the "Z movie" The Fat Spy (1966). Francis Ford Coppola heard of Malkin from Avakian, who had edited Coppola's film You're a Big Boy Now (1966); it turned out that Malkin and Coppola had been acquainted as teenagers growing up in the same Queens neighborhood. Coppola engaged Malkin to edit his fourth film as director, The Rain People (1969). He worked as an associate editor on two additional films edited by Robert Q. Lovett: End of the Road (directed by Aram Avakian-1970), and Cotton Comes to Harlem (directed by Ossie Davis-1970). Malkin was the editor for the 1973 film directed by Avakian, Cops and Robbers.
The Godfather and the 1970s
The Godfather was extremely successful artistically and at the box-office; among other distinctions, it won the Academy Award for Best Picture for 1972. Production of a sequel, The Godfather Part II, started in 1973. Malkin and Richard Marks joined Zinner as co-editors. Godfather Part II, which was released in 1974 and enjoyed success comparable to The Godfather, is noted for its intercutting between two storylines, one from Sicily in the early 20th century, and a second contemporary story that follows the first film's action. Coppola subsequently asked Malkin to edit a television miniseries, The Godfather Saga (1977), that was based on the two films. The miniseries incorporated scenes that could not be included in the original versions, and replaced the complex intercutting between time periods of the original films with a more straightforward chronological ordering.
Malkin was an additional editor for Apocalypse Now (1979), and a supervising editor for the Coppola-produced film Hammett (directed by Wim Wenders, 1982). In this period, Malkin also edited Four Friends (1981), which was directed by Arthur Penn. Dede Allen had edited Penn's films since Bonnie and Clyde (1967), but was unavailable for this film. Stephen Prince has written of the contrast between them: "... the difference an editor makes on a director's films is evident by comparing his more linear approach to Dede Allen's fractured and off-center cutting".
1980s and 1990s
During the 1980s Malkin edited six of Coppola's films, from Rumble Fish (1983) through The Godfather Part III (1990). He was joined by his former mentor Robert Q. Lovett for The Cotton Club (1984), which garnered the two editors a nomination for the Academy Award. Malkin also edited the film Big (1988) that was directed by Penny Marshall. By the end of the decade Coppola had agreed to make The Godfather Part III (1990), and brought in Malkin, Lisa Fruchtman, and Walter Murch to edit. Malkin and Murch then edited a compilation entitled The Godfather Trilogy: 1901–1980 that was released to video in 1992. The compilation included footage from the theatrically released versions of all three films as well as additional footage. A 1993 review in Time reads, "This trilogy has a novelistic density, a rueful, unhurried lyricism and a depth that, singly, the films could not achieve. Altogether glorious."
In the 1990s, in addition to his work with Coppola on Jack (1996) and The Rainmaker (1997), Malkin edited four films with director Andrew Bergman. Their first film together, The Freshman (1992), is to some extent a comic "sendup" of the original 1972 Godfather film, including a part played by Marlon Brando. Malkin's most recent film is The Big Bounce (2004), which was directed by George Armitage.
Malkin, Marks, and Zinner were nominated for the BAFTA Award for Best Editing for The Godfather: Part II (1974). He and Robert Q. Lovett were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Film Editing for The Cotton Club (directed by Francis Ford Coppola-1984). Malkin, Murch, and Fruchtman were nominated for the Academy Award for editing The Godfather Part III (1990). Malkin has been selected for membership in the American Cinema Editors.
Filmography (as editor)
The director for each film is indicated in parenthesis. Filmography based on Oldham's book and the Internet Movie Database.
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