Need to find a job after graduating film school or just want a fresh start in a new city? Well pack your bags and call a moving truck because we’ve scanned the U.S. for the best places for a career as a video editor.
After consulting with the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we narrowed it down to the top 10 cities to live and work based on employment level, salary, and health of the editing community.
1. Los Angeles, CA
When it comes to movies, Los Angeles is the first place you think of. And for good reason too! Countless motion pictures are filmed out in L.A and all these films need someone to edit them. In 2014, there were about 8,810 video editors working in L.A. making on average, $105,370 annually.
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In between editing the next blockbuster film, take the time to soak in the palm tree lined city and make friends in the editing community with user groups like the LAPPG and the Los Angeles Creative Pro User Group (LACPUG). These groups are well attended and provide a great support/learning experience for editors.
2. New York, NY
Home to the Tribeca Film Festival, the New York Film Academy and huge television networks, New York is a buzz with jobs for video editors. Over 3,680 video editors in NYC earn about $75,100 annually.
Grab a bagel and a slice of pizza and plan your week/weekend around the many film festivals, workshops and the MoPictive user group meetings.
3. Chicago, IL
Chicago breeds comedy legends from Charlie Chaplin to Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. With new comedic hopefuls and talent swarming to the city, the indie film scene is booming. In Chicago, over 540 video editors made an average annual salary of $54,460 in 2014.
Network at the Chicago Creative Pro Users Group (ChicPUG) and catch an improv show after the meeting!
4. Boston, MA
“I think I’ll go to Boston. I think I’ll start a new life, I think I’ll start it over,” sings Augustana in their 2005 hit, “Boston.” So take those bags and head to the city Ben Affleck and Matt Damon love. Take comfort in knowing that 420 editors were paid on average $54,210 annually.
Catch a ball at Fenway Park, grab a beer at one of the many breweries and then meet some friends for a meeting at the Boston Avid Users Group (BAVUG). This group has been running for 11 years and features top editors in Boston.
5. Nashville, TN
Not just the epicenter for music, Nashville is brimming with a lively video-editing scene. Like country? CMT’s hit shows are filmed and edited in this great state. 370 video editors were paid $71,640 annually in 2014.
Put on some cowboy boots, see a concert, and network at the Nashville Film Festival. The Film Festival features first time films to Oscar nominated films. There are even a few celebrities that attend making it a great place to have a great time while networking.
6. San Francisco, CA
San Francisco is a happening place to be for creatives. There’s always an artist, an actor, or a filmmaker so video editors fit well into the city. Around 350 video editors made around $67,800 this past year.
Channel your artistic side with a trip to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and then stop by a San Francisco Cutters meeting to talk shop. The San Francisco Cutters work with editors using all NLEs including Adobe Premiere Pro CC, Adobe After Effects CC, Avid Media Composer, Apple Final Cut Pro X and 7.
7. Atlanta, GA
Film companies are choosing Atlanta as the new movie destination. The switch has video editors moving to Atlanta for a taste of the editing life. In Atlanta, 330 editors made about $52,300 in the past year.
Sip some sweet tea and swing by the Atlanta Cutters Users Group for a meeting between video editors. I’ve even heard they do NewBlueFX giveaways at meetings.
8. Orlando, FL
Move to a warm and sunny locale to get all your editing done. About 310 video editors made around $40, 350 in 2014.
When you’re not making childhood dreams come true at Disney World or enjoying the beach, stop by the Production Group of Orlando for a meet up with fellow video editors.
9.) Washington, D.C.
Home to our nation’s capital, D.C. is big on news and politics. Work for a wide range of news stations to edit everything from upcoming elects to late breaking news. About 300 video editors brought home about $74,050 annually.
Take a stroll around the National Mall, enjoy free admission to all the Smithsonians, and meetup with the DMV Creative Pro Users Group. Collaborate with filmmakers and broadcast video editors on projects.
10.) Portland, OR
The Pacific Northwest is crowded with beautiful green trees perfect for shows like Grimm and Portlandia. With so many shows in Portland, hip video editors are making their move to cash in on their careers. 300 video editors in Portland made around $46,560 in the past year.
Go for a hike and wrap up your day with a Final Cut Pro Portland Users Group meeting.
Now that you know where you want to move it’s time to call the movers and say goodbye!
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