Sylvia Ingemarsdotter (sometimes credited as Sylvia Ingemarsson) is a Swedish editor who began working as an assistant at age eighteen on international productions like Sidney Lumet’s The Sea Gull and Susan Sontag’s Dust for Cannibals. Her first theatrical editing credit was on Bo Widerberg’s Man on the Roof, which brought her to the attention of Ingmar Bergman. Ingemarsdotter edited thirteen of Bergman’s films, including , Fanny and Alexander, Autumn Sonata and After the Rehearsal. She has also worked for other directors such as Liv Ullman (Faithless), Lasse Åberg (Sällskapsresan eller Finns det svenskt kaffe på grisfesten), Dusan Makaveyev (Montenegro), Per Berglund (Den demokratiske terroristen), Gunnel Lindblom (Sally and Freedom), and Stig Björkman (Behind the Shutters).
In addition to editing many landmark, popular Swedish films, Ingemarsdotter spearheaded the founding of Sveriges Filmklippare (SFK – the Swedish Film Editors’s guild).
(Ulla Ryghe, who has her own page on this website, edited numerous other films for Bergman, including Through a Glass Darkly, The Silence, and Persona.)
“The editing room was small, miserable and disorganized as it usually gets when different people pass through it in various stages of stressful work and nobody has time to make it comfortable. Since I cannot work in disarray I tried to make the room nicer with the help of a couple of red chairs, a table and cloth and a framed poster from the silent screen. This really made a difference.”
“In my opinion it is seldom you can tell who edited a film because it is a co-operation, but sometimes the director chooses his editor and it works well the first time and so it happens that they continue working together. It has a lot to do with the chemistry between people. It is important that an editor is patient, meticulous, has imagination and intuition. Therefore I believe that a good editor is both born and created through experience.”
-Two excerpts from “Fine Cuts: The Art of European Film Editing” by Richard Crittenden. The full text can be found in the Appendix.
1924 – 2011
Ulla Ryghe was a journalist who began to think that telling news stories through film would be more effective than through the printed word. She got her first job as an assistant editor at Europa Studios, where she was mentored by Wic Kjellin, who was their only editor. Ryghe credits her with being an “honest and generous instructor.” Ryghe then worked at Svensk Filmindustri as an assistant to Oscar Rosander on Ingmar Bergman’s The Devil’s Eye. When Rosander and Bergman had a falling out, Ryghe was given her first opportunity to serve as editor on Bergman’s Through a Glass Darkly. She continued as Bergman’s primary editor throughout the 1960s, and the two collaborated on a total of eight films, including The Silence, Hour of the Wolf, Persona, and Shame.
Ryghe also edited films with other directors such as Jörn Donner (Vittnesbörd om henne), Alf Kjellin (Siska), Aren Mattsson (Nightmare), Bonnie Sherr Klein (VTR St-Jacques), and Vilgot Sjöman (The Dress, Klänningen and Stimulantia).
Ryghe later impacted international cinema through her work at Canada’s National Film Board, the Swedish Film Institute’s international office in Paris, and the Australian Film Commission. While teaching at the Australian Film and Television School, she mentored director Jane Campion and served as an executive producer on Campion’s first short film An Exercise in Discipline: Peel. In 2008 Ryghe published Travels in Wonderland, a memoir of her life as an editor.
(Sylvia Ingemarsdotter, who has her own page on this website, also edited numerous films for Bergman, including Autumn Sonata and Fanny and Alexander.)
“My skills multiplied in leaps and bounds, and by the next year Bergman had much more of an editor at his side. From the very beginning, I noted that my remarks and/or suggestions always found an ear. The response was not always immediate, but sooner or later I was told ‘let’s try it’ or ‘I have thought about it, and I do not wish to do it’ followed by his reasons. It was very instructive, and I admired that in the editing room Bergman was always more intent on getting it right than being right.”
—from “Travels in Wonderland” by Ulla Ryghe. The full text can be found in the Appendix.