Although some might argue that editors do most of their travelling from inside a darkened edit suite, Scott Flyger’s CV shows clear signs of having left the building.
Flyger grew up on the Whangaparaoa Peninsula north of Auckland, then relocated to the big smoke as a teen. After breaking into editing via Shortland Street he spent twelve years in London, where he found himself cutting together images of bad girls, footballers wives, rock stars, and sundry comedians. These days based in Christchurch, where he runs post-production company Due South Films, Flyger continues to work on a variety of projects, and has expanded into producing.
Flyger’s first editing gig was a few weeks fill-in work as an assistant editor on Shortland Street. That led to three months cutting controversial organic farming documentary Rubber Gloves or Green Fingers, which got him two years working at TVNZ. The broadcaster sat on Rubber Gloves for over a year before finally putting it to air.
Eventually Flyger went freelance and got extremely busy on a diet of commercials and television shows: from makeover shows to travel, to empire-launching reality show Popstars and wacky short Sci-Fi Betty.
In 2001, Flyger headed to London. Work arrived quickly; his fast expanding English CV would showcase his versatility, and continue to win him further UK gigs even after returning home.
On the drama front, he edited occasional episodes of anarchic comedy-drama Teachers, and the high profile Footballers Wives and Bad Girls. He also cut almost a series worth of high energy documentary series I’m in a Rock and Roll Band, one of many musical projects on his CV (including an acclaimed episode of Punk Britannia).
But it was probably comedy that got him the most work in England: two seasons of editing Katy Brand’s Big Ass Show; another two seasons cutting (and helping set up post-production) for Little Howard’s Big Question, which mixed live action with an animated character; not to mention being left pretty much alone to command the edit of BAFTA-winning comedy That Mitchell and Webb Look. The show featured the duo from Channel 4 hit Peep Show; Flyger remembers the experience as “fun, sweat and tears from start to finish”.
One of Flyger’s first gigs after arriving in London had been helping out on Top Gear. Though Flyger regrets admitting he knew little about cars, thereby failing to get himself invited back, he clearly impressed somebody: later he was asked to edit Songs for Amy, the first feature from Top Gear director Konrad Begg. Set in Ireland, the result was described by Hot Press (the Irish equivalent of NME) as a "charming, offbeat and darkly comedic love story”.
In 2005 Flyger came back to New Zealand to head up post-production on competitive adventure series The Summit. He began cutting the show alone in a garage in the Craggieburn Ranges, surrounded by what seemed to be the entire region’s mouse population. He helped out on two episodes of Marcus Lush award-winner Off the Rails on weekends off.
By the time Flyger was offered further work on Top Gear, the decision had already been made to return for good to New Zealand. In Christchurch he set up post-production house Due South Films.
Since then he has worked with Christchurch veteran Gerard Smyth: editing and co-writing Smyth’s acclaimed documentary feature Aunty and the Star People (about Jean Watson’s charity work in India), and playing multiple roles on post-quake series Christchurch: From the Streets. In 2015 he worked on another quake related project: Peter Young’s The Art of Recovery, which he co-edited with Gaylene Barnes. More projects are on the boil.
Profile written by Ian Pryor
Due South Films website. Accessed 20 November 2015
Russell Brown, 'Small World controversy blossoms on the internet' - Computerworld, 25 August 1997
'Scott Flyger Linkedin website. Accessed 20 November 2015
'That Mitchell and Webb Look’ British Comedy Guide website. Accessed 20 November 2015
Songs for Amy website (broken link)