The Work That Made Me in association withLBB

The Work That Made Me: Stewart Reeves

Music & Sound
London, UK
Work Editorial’s partner and editor tells LBB which book he regularly re-reads and the joys of working with talented friends

The best way to understand a person’s career is to look at the work that made them. Their first campaign. The campaign that someone else created which made them jealous. The campaign that taught them some painful but useful lessons. The work that they’re proudest of. 

Today, LBB speaks to Stewart Reeves, an award-winning editor and company partner at Work Editorial, about his career journey and the work that has stayed with him. Born in a small English town, he’s now based in LA, via London, Amsterdam, and Sydney. Known for his editing style, Stewart has worked with a number of high-profile clients including Apple, Audi, Samsung, and Huggies. Stewart tells LBB which project got out of control and why he really likes collaborating with his friends. 

LBB> Tell us a little bit about your career journey – how did you get into the industry? Was this always the plan?

Stewart> I come from a small working class town on the east coast of England, so had you asked me if I thought I’d end up in LA working with the best directors in the world, then no I don’t think that was the plan. I was fortunate enough to get a meeting with Rick Lawley at Whitehouse and we bonded over smelly fishing towns. It was supposed to be a 15-minute interview but somehow I ended up following him around all day.


LBB> How and when did you first join Work Editorial?

Stewart> There is some debate between Jane and I, but one of us was in charge of the other at Whitehouse. When I left to go travelling we stayed in touch and when they decided to open an office in LA, it seemed like the most incredible opportunity. I officially joined on 2nd February 2016.


LBB> The ad/music video from my childhood that stays with me…

Stewart> On the day I met Rick Lawley, he showed me the job he was working on. It was a Gordon's Gin commercial directed by Adrian Moat, of a man in underpants twirling down a stick into some bubbles - I was so amazed by it. Coincidentally it was DP’d by a very good friend of mine now Peter Thwaites.


LBB> The ad/music video/game/web platform that made me want to get into the industry…

Stewart> When I was doing work experience, Russell Icke asked me what I thought of the music on the ad he was cutting - it was Levi’s ‘Drugstore’. My head exploded. 

LBB> The creative work (film/album/game/ad/album/book/poem etc) that I keep revisiting…

Stewart>  With film and music, it’s like a cycle so I would be loathe to pinpoint just one, but every couple of years I re-read Richard Rhodes’ ‘The Making of the Atomic Bomb’. I don’t know why, but I find it really comforting.


LBB> My first professional project…

Stewart>  A national lottery commercial with a brass band, sadly forgotten and lost to the annals of time.


LBB> The piece of work (ad/music video/ platform…) that made me so angry that I vowed to never make anything like *that 

Stewart> I’d like to think that as the editor of this project, I would have been the one saying, “Ummm guys…Does this feel a little bit off?”


LBB> The piece of work (ad/music video/ platform…) that still makes me jealous… 

Stewart> My partners at work are probably the best editors in the world, which can make jealousy quite a common thing. When Richard Orrick asks you to take a look at something, you know you're probably going to be sick in the bathroom.

Anything Biff Butler does always make men feel slightly worse about myself. Neil Smith showed me the first edit of his recent Chevrolet spot for the super bowl and I nearly drove my car into the ocean. But if I were to pick one spot, it would be Puma edited by Richard Orrick. Every editor has a spot like this somewhere, except they don’t - they just have a pale imitation of one.

LBB> The creative project that changed my career…

Stewart> I did spot for Noam Murro in Australia and it was just FX plates, but I had some idea who Noam was at the time, so I really went to town on making it amazing. He seemed to like it and then started booking me for jobs in the US. I will forever be thankful to Noam.

LBB> The work that I’m proudest of…

Stewart> One of my closest friends is Christopher Riggert, who I think is an exceptional director but also one of the most interesting people on the planet. We did a spot for Spark which to this day still makes me cry.

And I have been fortunate enough to work on the Apple Underdogs series with my partner Neil, which has been one of the most fulfilling professional experiences in my life. I have always loved working with Mark Molloy but getting to edit something with another editor has been a revelation. Honestly if I could work with another editor on every job I would.

LBB> I was involved in this and it makes me cringe… 

Stewart> The Hugh Jackman’s Peloton challenge. Like everyone in the world I was deeply affected by the pandemic and unlike everyone I didn’t try and make bread or learn another language. Instead I decided I would try and beat Hugh Jackman’s personal record on the Peloton. I made literally hundreds of pieces of content. It kinda got out of control. Just before I finished, I was having a production call with Greg Fraser (DP of Dune and Batman) and The Mill about making the final piece when I suddenly realised that I had in fact gone insane - fortunately, the last piece was never produced, but it involved fighter planes and re-recorded songs from Les Miserables.


LBB> The recent project I was involved in that excited me the most…

Stewart> I was really happy with how the last’ Underdogs' film turned out, it has over 33 million hits and honestly I think it's my favourite one of the series.


LBB> What’s your dream project to work on or who would you like to collaborate with most?

Stewart> Doesn’t everyone dream of working with Paul Thomas Anderson on at least one thing? I’ve heard interviews with him and I am pretty sure he would like my jokes. In all seriousness, I’d love to work with any of my good friends on a long-form project. Henry Hobson would be a wonderful person to work with for a few months. Honestly, I still get so excited about jobs, there is no better feeling than the first day of a job you’re excited about.

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