Interview Society

Freelance editor Hemanth Paranji on his special moment

Hemanth Paranji   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

The five-month wait ended for Hemanth Paranji when he laid his hands on the coveted statuette recently. Though the Emmy awards live-streamed in April to announce the winning team of producer, reporter, writer, photographer and editor for their special event coverage of The World Cup Ticker Tape Celebration (for 2019) for WCBS TV, the celebrations started only now. Hemanth Paranji, the editor recalls, “Half the fun in watching a live show is the audience response; When nominations are read out, cameras show close-ups of nominees and audience roars in applause but this was different.”

A freelance editor for CBS and ABC Television in the US, Hemanth was nominated for a whopping seven categories (investigative news, breaking news and feature story). Connecting via email, Hemanth who hails from Hyderabad, says he expected to win more than one! “I was watching the show in my study room with the doors shut. My heart sank when others won; and I was mentally preparing to be in that ‘forever-a-nominee-club’. When I screamed ‘yahoo!’ on hearing my name, my wife and kids came running in and hand thumpings and hugs followed.”

The winning show The World Cup Ticker Tape Celebration was about a victory parade of the USA Women’s team that won the 2019 FIFA World Championship. The team interspersed the parade with 60 and 90-second news packages of players’ personal stories and how they trained individually. The five other nominees in the Special Events category included two teams from NYC Life Channel and BARD Entertainment Channel covering The World Cup Ticker Tape Celebration; and teams from FOX5, ABC7 & NY1 News for March of the Living, The New York International Auto Show and the Tony Awards Red Carpet show. He adds, “ABC7, a tough competitor got the lion’s share of the Emmys, so to beat them was a great feeling.”

This win is also special since Hemanth had been nominated for an ‘editor award’ four years ago for Crash of Delta Flight 101 show; but he didn’t win then. When the statuette got delivered to him, he reveals he had goosebumps while opening the package and his journey ‘in mainstream American media flashed in front of his eyes.’

Hemanth’s career began in the mid ’80s with an apprenticeship under Shyam Benegal and a brief stint assisting his brother Jayanth Paranji (Telugu film director) as well as Shumantro Goshal, Ram Madhvani and Johnny Pinto in Mumbai. He also made documentaries on LK Advani’s Rath Yatra and for Madhya Pradesh state government. Then Hemanth moved to New York. He calls the journey fulfilling and acknowledges his wife’s contribution to it He adds, “I also salute my colleagues and friends who are far ahead.”

Do innovations in filmmaking technologies impact video editing? “I do not foresee a good future for tech specialists including video editors especially in the television news industry,” says Hemanth and adds, “With a user-friendly software, there is a less need for photographers, editors and sound engineers. Transmission engineers can transmit even from a subway train.”

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Printable version | Nov 24, 2020 9:29:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/freelance-editor-hemanth-paranji-shares-a-special-moment/article32929284.ece

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