By Angela Maria Avella
Originally from Bogotá, Colombia, Camila Mejía Duque is a video editor that came to the United States six years ago with one goal in mind: take over the movie industry and leave her mark. Ever since, she has directed and edited multiple short films that have been recognized in international film festivals all over the world, music videos, and most notably she has taken over Digital Media Rights’ social media channel “QTTV”, which focuses on LGBTQ+ content and amasses a following of over 400 thousand viewers. I sat down with Camila to see what’s the secret to her success and what can we expect from her next.
Let’s start with the basics; what made you want to become a video editor?
I think video editing is a very underrated job that maybe we don’t pay that much attention to but it’s actually one of the most crucial jobs in the film industry. When I studied film I just naturally gravitated towards it, I’ve always liked telling stories, I’m very passionate about writing too and to me it feels like the video editor is the second writer of the film. We have a script to stick to, but how the story gets told is ultimately in my hands and I always liked that, the ability to reshape a story in the cutting room.
How does that reshaping of the story align with you current job on QTTV?
That’s actually a great question because my job right now is to reshape those stories and hook the audience into the movie with one clip, you know? Social media is a very different media where you have to just keep the attention of a person from the first thirty seconds. With films, you get the luxury of slow build-ups and setting worlds, but in social media you have to simultaneously set the role and get to the climax so you don’t lose that viewer and that is a hard balance to achieve.
It seems like Mejia’s strategy for her videos is working since multiple of her videos on QTTV boast over a millions of views, her most popular one reaching 5,4 million views as of the date of this interview. It’s also worth noting that making a name as an independent filmmaker in a male dominated industry is by no means an easy feat, but Mejia is not only making a name of herself but has been able to maintain herself in the American industry for the past five years; coming Colombia pursuing Masters of Fine Arts in Los Angeles and after solidifying her professional career in New York City.
But apart from successfully leading Digital Media Rights owned “QTTV”, Mejia has also been working on projects on the side, the most notable ones being Elizabeth Frohlich’s “Shatter” music video which is the artists most viewed video at 41 thousand views; additionally, she recently had her short film “Mine” selected for two international film festivals (Madrid International Independent Film Festival and Hollywood on the Tiber Film Awards), I asked her about her intentions of continuing her independent work and what more can we expect from her in the future.
Do you have any projects lined up?
I enjoy my job at Digital Media Rights a lot, but I think the beauty of the film industry is that you can get your hand on multiple things at the same time so I have a couple of things projected for the next couple of years that I hope pan out. There might be something back in California that is really different to what I’ve been doing and it’s more on the documentary side, which would be fun to explore. Whatever comes next, I’m very excited to keep learning and growing in this industry I love so much.