Margaret Cardin Remembers

Margaret Cardin was interviewed by Graham Shirley (for the National Film and Sound Archives) in 1980. This extract from the interview was prepared by Bob Sitsky.

In 1956 I was working in Sydney in David Jones. There was virtually no work in the film industry in those days. One day Neil Hutchinson (ABC Head of Drama) came to see me at work and took me out for lunch - television was starting up and Neil wanted me to work in the ABC. Soon after that I received a letter from the ABC offering me a job. I was the first film editor to be employed by the ABC at Gore Hill - I commenced work on September 17. Soon after people like Reg Barret and Derek Timmins also joined up.

One of my strengths was knowledge of negative cutting. I taught many film staff all about it - what to do and how to do it. We also started up the Film Library in 1956.

I worked closely with the News Department - with people like John Crews. I found that the journalists followed continuity principles and they learnt quickly about film making - their stuff was quiet easy to edit.

I also worked with people like John Appleton (Head of Childrens Programs) and Kay Kinnane (Head of Education).

I did not go out in the field, but I gave a lot of advice to film cinecamera staff and others about putting together a film story.

I found that the ABC was a bit slow for me. Also I did not like the workplace politics that was there. I was just too impatient.

I ended up leaving the ABC in 1959 after working there for 3 years. In 1960 I established my own film editing business.

Margaret Cardin was born in London. She worked in the technical area of filmmaking before joining Movietone and Ealing Studios in Britain. She also worked for the BBC as a film librarian. In 1950 she came to Australia, with no intention of staying, but was soon editing Captain Thunderbolt. She also did post-synchronising for Pagewood, as well as optical work, and many short films. She worked for the ABC at Gore Hill from 1956 to 1959. After establishing her own business she went on to work as a negative cutter and editor on such films as 'Mad Max', 'My Brilliant Career' and 'Picnic at Hanging Rock.' She died in 1998.


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