Meet Sue Dawson: Executive Director of Post ProductionBack to Blog
Sue Dawson’s career at Whitehouse began when she joined as Executive Producer in 1998. Known for her excellent advice, always with an eye on the bigger picture, Sue oversees the production departments across all offices as well as charting new brand and agency relationships and workflows. Read on to learn more about Sue, glean some useful advice, and maybe a few streaming recommendations too.
When did you decide to work in post & why? What was your path to this point?
I decided to work in post after being an agency producer for 10 years. Watching the spot come together was always my favorite part of the process.
What’s your favorite thing about post and why?
The people and the process. I’ve watched editors create magic out of disparate dailies, craft stories from seemingly unrelated vignettes, and put scenes together that on paper wouldn’t make sense.
Can you tell us about a few projects you are proud of and why?
Again, it’s the people. Not that they were projects, but to have been a small part of the growth of my colleagues, Joni Williamson, Joanna Manning, Heidi Black to name a few make me most proud.
Biggest creative challenge you’ve faced?
When I was an agency producer, we were shooting Scottie Pippen in the United Center (I’m dating myself), and the Blackhawks had a game that night so we only had the venue for a limited time. You can see where this story is going. We still needed the end shot which we planned to film in a hallway, but we were running behind and the Blackhawks were literally walking down the hall that we had planned to use. So instead of walking down the long hallway and out the door, we put a filter sheet in the locker room and Scottie walks off allegedly into the distance, but really into a sheet of paper – which you can tell if you’re looking for it. Another reason why I love post – what’s done is done and we can deal with what we have been given. For better or worse. Here’s the spot: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nTvSjp7T8gU
Directors: Mario and Melvin Van Peebles, Wieden+Kennedy credits: EP: Bill Davenport, CD: Susan Hoffman, AD: Bret Ridgway, CW: Jimmy Smith
Advice for anyone entering post?
Work with the best.
Best advice you’ve received?
Do more than they ask. Do the right thing and don’t fuck up. Not sure if it’s the best advice, but it was what I was given and for better or worse, what I’ve forwarded on as well. Just ask Brian May.
What is something that inspires you?
Great writing/writers. Toni Morrison’s oeuvre is extraordinary.
Who is someone that you admire and why?
My dad. A great sense of humor, wise, witty and humble. A man of few, but poignant words.
Favorite time of day?
Winter sunsets, so the time varies…
Something that makes you smile.
Seeing the dolphins
Best show to stream
Too many to just name one, “best.”
Here are a few though:
The Great British Baking Show, Lenox Hill, Unforgotten, The Queen’s Gambit, Catastrophe, Fleabag
Being in the ocean
Favorite insta account
Something that would surprise people
I have a Masters in Humanities
Most underrated performance in a tv show/film
Nicola Walker, Unforgotten
What is your office “must have?”
Now or during the “before” times? This one holds true for both places actually, Pamplemousse La Croix