Cut to Black: Vincent K. “Vinnie” DeRamus, Assistant Editor

For each day in the month of February, the African American Steering Committee will be highlighting Local 700’s African American members, both past and present, and their accomplishments. We look forward to showing the contributions and influences African Americans have had on the industry.

Name: Vincent K. “Vinnie” DeRamus
What’s your job? I am an assistant editor at Wolf Entertainment
List the credits you’re most proud of. The show I’m working on now, “Chicago Med,” is the project I’m most proud of. Before my current show, I worked on NBC’s “The Voice” and prior to those shows, I worked in film trailers and some of the projects I’m grateful to have been a part of were, “Lord of the Rings,” the first “Transformers” movie and “Star Trek” (2009), to name a few.
What are you working on right now? Currently, “Chicago Med” at Wolf Entertainment. It’s been a fantastic experience everything I’ve learned to this point in my career and everything I’m learning on “Chicago Med” is taking me to a level I always hoped I’d reach in my career.
Who and what are your influences and/or mentors? As for mentors, Lillian E. Benson, ACE, has been a massive influence for me. We talk intently on a creative level almost on a daily basis, which is an experience I’ve not had much of in my career to this point and I’ll never be able to qualify how much it’s meant to me just in the last couple of years. Of course the mentors I have just met in the Diversity Mentorship program have already been willing to share their experience with me: Nena Erb, ACE Nona Khodai, ACE and Chris Cooke, ACE. Robert Malachowski, ACE  who was instrumental in the growth of my self-confidence and skillset at The Voice. Hudson Smith and Glen Ebesu taught me how to stay centered. Also, from my days in trailers, Art Mondrala, Jenn Horvath and Jon Epstein – the first editor to offer me his Avid bay after hours to “cut” my teeth on when I was a PA taking his dinner order. And lastly, Sally Ray, my boss from Jim Henson’s Creature Shop. She had the fateful idea that led me to revisit my post production education when the Creature Shop was looking for an editor to cut reels of our animatronic work for bid proposals and presentations. The encouragement, support, trust and friendship from these people has shaped who I am.
What books are you reading, shows are you watching and/or movies you’re excited about? I have several books near my bed that I’m excited about finishing:
“How to Be Black” – Baratunde Thurston
“Black Panther a Nation Under Our Feet, Book One” (graphic novel) – Ta-Nehisi Coates
“Altered Carbon” – Richard K. Morgan
“The Grand Design” – Stephen Hawkins
“Death by Black Hole” – Neil deGrasse Tyson
Shows that I’m currently watching:
“Star Trek: Discovery”
“The Book of Boba Fett”
“What We Do In The Shadows”
“Abbott Elementary”
“We Are Lady Parts”
“Rick and Morty”
Recent films:
“Don’t Look Up”
“C’mon, C’mon”
What would be your superhero name? Acceptor of All
What are your black history month memories and any cultural or historical impacts on your life? A bit of my own history I recently discovered was my grandmother’s story of being the last of the sharecroppers riding away in a horse drawn cart from a plantation she “worked” on as a child. She passed away just seven days before her 101st birthday last year in 2021. It really hit me how not far this part of our country’s history is in the past. Culturally, I am huge fan and supporter of music created by black bands in genres that are presumed to not be “black” like punk rock or some sub-genres of indie rock.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given? “Always in motion, is the future…”
If you could time travel, when would you go and why? A time when intergalactic travel is commonplace and equality is a not a commodity. I think in “Star Trek.”
What’s a little known fact about you? What are your hidden (or not so hidden) talents? Handy-man, mountain biker, model-maker, bass player (kinda).
What’s your favorite (Black) television/movie moment? “Do the Right Thing,” was a pivotal moment for a black film with a message. It ushered in an era of bringing such films to the forefront of mainstream cinema. Moments in TV from shows like “Black Jesus” and “Southside” and films like “Friday” resonate with me. While they are filled with stereotypes and archetypical characters and stories, they afford me the ability to laugh about the circumstances that were otherwise traumatizing, while growing up in Compton.
Was there a television show/movie that inspired you to pursue your career? “The Empire Strikes Back.” Thought I’d either save the galaxy like Luke or make Sci-Fi movies. Given warp travel isn’t yet possible, I found the latter to be a more plausible pursuit.
What’s your personal/professional mantra? Breathe.
What’s the last show/movie that left you speechless? Most recently, “Don’t Look Up!” Scary.
What would be your dream project to work on? One of my own. A TV series that I create.