Annette Davey on editing Netflix's <I>Maid</I>
October 11, 2021

Annette Davey on editing Netflix's Maid

Editor Annette Davey is originally from Australia, but is now based in Los Angeles and New York, where she works in both television and film. She was most recently involved in the post production of Netflix’s Maid, starring Margaret Qualley, Nick Robinson and Andie Macdowell. Inspired by the New York Times best-selling memoir, “Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive” by Stephanie Land, Maid follows the story of Alex, a single mother, who turns to housecleaning to barely make ends meet as she escapes an abusive relationship and overcomes homelessness to create a better life for her daughter, Maddy. 
The series consists of ten 52-minute episodes.

Davey recently took a moment to talk about her career and latest work.

Tell us about your background.

“I started my film & TV career in Australia, graduating. from the prestigious Australian Film & TV School. I was invited to work in America by an Oscar-winning editor, Gabriella Cristiani (The Last Emperor) and eventually moved to the USA permanently. Australia was a great training ground in filmmaking, as you have to really love the industry to get involved. It's smaller, with lower budgets, and is extremely competitive, but once you are accepted, it's an amazing learning experience. I was lucky enough to work in Sydney for several years as an assistant editor and editor, and edited many award-winning films and documentaries before relocating to the USA. Since arriving in the US, I have worked in both TV & films, and I have split my time between New York and Los Angeles. I just completed editing Maid for Netflix, starring Margaret Qualley, and this has been a really exciting and rewarding series to be involved with.”

How did you get involved with Maid?

“I was recommended to John Wells (producer) and Molly Smith Meltzer (creator) by a showrunner from Get Shorty, Davey Holmes, whom I had worked with previously. I was in Australia at the time, escaping the pandemic, but the project was so exciting and the cast & filmmakers were so exceptional that I returned to work on it last year, which was a great choice!”

What were the needs of the project?

“Maid was shot during the pandemic, in Canada, so all post was done remotely. There were three editors and we all worked from our apartments, and would have multiple sessions on Zoom or Evercast throughout the editing. As it was a new, original series, with no pilot shot before going into the series, we had to figure out the tone and style of the show, which is always fun, exciting and sometimes challenging. But these are the best kind of challenges!”

What do you use for editing?  

“We used Avid Media Composer, combined with Evercast to allow us to edit remotely with the producers and directors.”

What were some of the interesting or unique challenges you faced?
“Working with children is always a challenge, but the young actress Rylea Navaeh Whittet, playing the daughter in the series, was amazing, so that was much easier. Margaret Qualley was incredible in the series, and it was fun and unique having her mother, Andie Macdowell, play her mother in the series! Everyone in the show really did an amazing job, and the crew performed miracles under the COVID restrictions. Altogether it was a truly-enjoyable experience, and I feel very lucky to have worked on such an incredible new series.”

Where can we follow you online?

“I am on Instagram: @nettsdavey. My IMDB, Linkedin and Facebook are all Annette Davey. I am also a member of American Cinema Editors, the Motion Picture Editors Guild, and I often work in Australia as a consulting editor, and teach and mentor at The Gotham Film & Media Institute.”