Tania Mesta Joins Lost Planet

The El Paso, TX native has worked with some of the biggest names in fashion, where she discovered her superpower for building stories in post. We took a moment to chat with Tania to learn about the twisty gravitational pull that led her to our solar system.

How did you find yourself in editing?

In school I was studying molecular biology, I thought I wanted to pursue science. But then I switched to an English major, and then film production. I was a little hesitant to go into film because I was unsure if I would be able to find a job after school, not that English would be better. Editing was always something I was doing, whether it was for my side job or just because I had the program and there were always things that needed to be edited.

When I got out of college, I worked in LA for a home renovation show in a weird PA kind of position, and then I moved to New York and worked at a photo agency, but that wasn’t what I really wanted to do. While all that was going on, I always had an editing project on the side, but it wasn’t until after working on a TV show for six months that I was like, that’s it. I need to make the jump from a producing track to editing. I started at a small company called Axios Productions, and that was my first editing gig.

Then, a friend led me to Rock Paper Scissors. That’s where I really started editing and learning about the post-production workflow and what not. After a while, I decided to make the jump to be an editor.

I did some freelancing at Modern Post and I met an editor there, Graeme Hagan, and started working with him. That’s when I worked on some Prada jobs with Ferdinando Verderi, I worked with Johannes Leonardo, and this company called Something New Co. It had been two-and-a-half or three years of that, and that’s when I knocked on Krystn’s door.

What was the first movie or TV show that made a major impact on you?

I didn’t have any life-changing experiences with films until I studied abroad in Paris. I did an internship with a very small, independent production company and through them, I was able to go to the Cannes Film Festival and I did this two week workshop with their producer in Greece. That experience opened my eyes to the world of international cinema.

I was at the festival watching movie after movie, some were very strange. Amour by Michael Haneke really stuck with me. There was also Beasts of the Southern Wild that year which also stuck with me.

You’ve cut a lot of fashion pieces, let’s talk about that.

I like working in this area because a lot of the work happens in the edit, that’s where the story comes to life. You have to find the story or make what you have into something fun. The decisions that affect the end product happen in the edit, which is true for a lot of projects, but especially fashion pieces. You’re really finding a language for it in the edit, which becomes part of the challenge.

What drinks can typically be found on your desk?

Coffee, for sure. I don’t always finish it but I love having it there next to me. I take it black.

Do you have a favorite Lost Planet memory?

Last week when I met up with Champion, I met Julie, Patrick, and Krystn in this busy New York coffee shop and then they’re like, okay, let’s do it. And we cheered with our to-go cups full of coffee and I was just so happy. I couldn’t stop smiling when I walked out.

Imagine you’re stranded on a remote island, but you can choose one DVD to bring with you. What would it be?

This is a hard one, I’m between three.

Let’s hear all three!

When Harry Met Sally, In the Mood for Love, and Moonstruck.