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Local Filmmakers a Dynamic Duo

PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y. – When Todd Sandler first worked with Robert Celestino, he was a young college student who was just breaking into the film industry. Sandler was working on a television pilot that Celestino directed and said he remembers the shoots vividly.

"We were outside for like 18 hours a day almost in the dead of winter and let me tell you, it was freezing," Sandler said.

Years later, the two sit on stage together at the Jacob Burns Film Center in Pleasantville after working together on Celestino's "Leave." Sandler worked as the film editor with Celestino and also on the sound for the film

How Sandler got the job for "Leave" may be more interesting than how the two originally met. Sandler was working at the Jacob Burns Film Center and the two reconnected at a showing of one of Celestino's other films. While talking, Celestino mentioned a new film he had planned and Sandler spoke of his interest in film editing.

"He asked me if he gave me the film editor position how would I make it work and I told him if he gave me the job I promised I would do whatever to make it work," Sandler said. "And he said 'alright you're hired,"

The rest was history.

"I almost thought he was kidding,"

Yet the chance paid off as the two masterfully constructed a film together as they bounced ideas off each other to better the project.

"It was a constant give and take process, one of us would have one good idea and then the other would almost one up it," Sandler said. "We were just always on the same wave length.

The two had a common connection with ties to the Westchester County community. Celestino originally resides from Yonkers and Sandler, although originally from Connecticut, has worked as the Director of Technology at Jacob Burns for years now.

Celestino had nothing but praise for his young editor and hopes the two work together again in the future

"I can't say enough about Todd, he's a phenomenal editor and we just connected a whole other level," Celestino said.

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