Sally Menke, Quentin Tarantino’s Oscar-Nominated Editor, Dies at 56

Published 5 years ago by , Updated March 3rd, 2014 at 6:44 am,

inglourious basterds1 Sally Menke, Quentin Tarantinos Oscar Nominated Editor, Dies at 56

Two-time Oscar nominee Sally Menke passed away in Los Angeles today. You may know her as the editor of every film Quentin Tarantino ever directed.

Her unexpected death at only 56 years-old marks the loss of one of the best editors of all time.

Menke went for a hike with her dog in the morning and friends alerted authorities when she did not return. Helicopters and police officers searched the Los Angeles hills near Griffith Park in search for Menke. Her dog was sitting by her side when police found and identified the body. The cause of death has not been determined, but the record-breaking heat in Los Angeles was, more than likely, a contributing factor.

Menke’s skills as an editor were among the best. Tarantino’s films are defined by their kinetic nature and fantastic editing. The structure, pace, and timing is impeccable and irreplaceable. The two were also close friends. On the Inglourious Basterds DVD and Blu-ray, there is a supplement called “Hi Sallys” – a Tarantino tradition where cast and crew give Sally a shout out – for when she would see the footage later in the editing room.

Menke was nominated for an Oscar in Editing on Pulp Fiction and Inglourious Basterds. Along with all of Tarantino’s films, her editing credits also include Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990) and All The Pretty Horses.

The film industry will miss Menke, but her style and efforts will always be a major part of entertainment. As long as Tarantino’s style remains, Menke has forever left her mark on film editing. There is no question she has helped shape the future of the industry – as it evolves in the editing bay.

Source: LA Times

TAGS: Obituaries
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  1. Very sad :(. I love all of tarantinos films and especially the editing. Split shots and all. This is a great loss to the film industry. I have to watch Jackie Brown now in her honor.

  2. You will be missed.

  3. you will truly be missed, editing is a huge part of the success of films. You be remembered forever through the amazing films u helped create RIP.

  4. R.I.P :( :( :(

  5. :'(

  6. Very sorry to hear this.
    My condolonces to her family and friends.

  7. im too sad to comment. time for a QT film fest this weekend

  8. Man this bad. I loved the “Hi Sallys”. Death proof ones were hilarious. Everyone was all serious in their scenes then suddenly smiling “Hi Sally!”. Wander how the editing for QT’s next movie will be. Every single QT movie. That’s a legacy. Big clap for her photo at next years oscars.

  9. So sad to hear this. Tarantino owes a lot to Menke. She will be sadly missed – the industry is a worse place without her.

  10. wow, just dropped dead? I would like to know the cause

    it was 113 degrees in LA on Monday so I wouldn’t be surprised if the heat had something to do with it like the article said

    • well, she was hiking with her dog in extreme heat…bad combo ;(

  11. Huge bummer dude. I love that they have the “Hi Sally” segments, though. That’s really cool, especially because they did it when she was alive, so she got to see them all.