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The Motion Picture Editors Guild (Local 700 IATSE) will honor Lillian E. Benson with its Fellowship and Service Award during a dinner April 8 at the Sheraton Universal Hotel.
“Lillian E. Benson has a had a long career editing influential and socially conscious films, and has been long active in working to increase minority participation in the filmmaking process,” said MPEG president and Academy Award-winner Alan Heim. “In addition, she has been an active member of the board of directors for the American Cinema Editors as secretary and co-chair of the diversity committee.”
Benson, who started her career in New York, was nominated for a 1991 Emmy for Jacqueline Shearer’s Civil Rights series Eyes on the Prize II, and a year later, became the first African-American female member of honorary society American Cinema Editors.
She is currently editing NBC’s Chicago Med and in 2016 worked on the Oprah Winfrey/Craig Wright drama Greenleaf. In addition, she was part of the editorial team on the documentary feature Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise.
Benson is an adjunct professor at USC and has been a guest lecturer at universities including Stanford. Having made her directorial debut with All Our Sons: Fallen Heroes of 9/11, she also recently completed her second film, Amen: The Life and Music of Jester Hairston.
Presenting Benson with the MPEG Award will be her friend and colleague Zeinabu Irene Davis, a film director and producer as well as a professor in the communications department of USC San Diego. Benson has edited several of Davis’ films, including 2009’s Passengers and 1989’s Trumpetistically, Clora Bryant.
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