Eric Zumbrunnen, Film Editor and Frequent Spike Jonze Collaborator, Dies at 52

Eric Zumbrunnen - Publicity - H 2017
Courtesy of Prodigy Public Relations

They worked together on 'Being John Malkovich,' 'Adaptation' and 'Her' and on an awfully fun Weezer music video.

Eric Zumbrunnen, an inventive film editor who worked with director Spike Jonze on several films, music videos and commercials, has died. He was 52.

Zumbrunnen died Aug. 1 of stomach cancer at his home in Pacific Palisades, Jason Kasperski of Prodigy Public Relations told The Hollywood Reporter.

Creative kindred spirits, Zumbrunnen and Jonze collaborated for more than two decades, teaming for the features Being John Malkovich (1999), Adaptation (2002), Where the Wild Things Are (2009) and Her (2013), an Oscar nominee for best picture.

Zumbrunnen won the best edited feature film award (comedy or musical) from the American Cinema Editors for Being John Malkovich.

A proficient guitarist, Zumbrunnen brought his love of music to his work editing music videos, among them classics like "Buddy Holly" from Weezer, Bjork's "It's Oh So Quiet" — both helmed by Jonze — "Where It's At" from Beck and "Tonight, Tonight" from Smashing Pumpkins.


More recently, Zumbrunnen was awarded a Bronze Lion for Editing at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity for his work on Jonze's innovative Kenzo World fragrance ad "My Mutant Brain."

He was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences this year based on his body of work.

Zumbrunnen, known to many as "EZ," graduated from USC with a degree in journalism and began his career in video postproduction. His work in commercials included spots for Nike, Xbox and Apple, and he also edited the 2012 feature John Carter.

In 2014, Zumbrunnen founded the Santa Monica-based postproduction company EXILE with partners Kirk Baxter, Matt Murphy and Carol Lynn Weaver.

Survivors include his wife Suzanne and children Henry and Greta. Arrangements are being made for a fellowship in his name.