Video interview with Michelle Tesoro (editor of “The Queen’s Gambit”)


“The story is about the cost of genius,” says editor of “The Queen’s Gambit” Michelle tesoro. For our recent webchat, she adds, “It colored everything we did, how we cut things, what the point of view was. If we kept all the scenes in mind it made it more interesting than trying to make us understand what chess is. Ultimately that is not what is important. What’s important is understanding what this means for Beth. Watch the exclusive video interview above.

“The Queen’s Gambit” is a Netflix limited series that follows the rise of chess prodigy Beth Harmon (Anya Taylor-Joy) during the Cold War. Tesoro says, “We are with this young woman and relate to her with all her faults and all her triumphs. I think in the end, that’s what attracted people to the show.

The editor reveals, “One of our biggest moves was breaking three episodes into four. The first three episodes were really long and had so many stories. It was really important to relate to the character and understand where She was going. Plus, everyone fell in love with Beth’s adoptive mother, Alma (Marielle Heller). We didn’t want to take any of that out. So instead of trying to break down what was scripted into hour-long chunks, we decided to break up those episodes. I think it was our biggest hit.

Previously, Tesoro has edited other acclaimed Netflix limited series, “Godless” and “When They See Us”. She admits that “Gambit” brought her new challenges: “I have never cut so many games from a game. Before I had cut horse racing, which I did not understand and poker which is another. game that I do not know. But I’ve never cut so many sports dramas before. Staying exciting and making it different each time was a challenge. Also, I hadn’t cut a lot of flashbacks before so it was a new feeling for me.

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