Derek Boonstra, Robert Martinez interview: ‘Bee Gees’ doc editors
In helping to construct the narrative for the recent Bee Gees documentary on HBO, editors Derek Boonstra and Robert Martinez had a huge hurdle to overcome with both Maurice Gibb and Robin Gibb having passed away. “There’s a previously made Bee Gees documentary called, ‘In Our Own Time.’ We really leaned on those interviews pretty, pretty heavily,” Martinez tells us during our recent webchat (watch the video above). This proved to be very useful in answering several questions they had as the filmmaking process went on. “We have different questions we want answered than maybe when they were alive, so some of the stuff that they hadn’t used, those interviews were just new ground for us to cover.”
“The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart,” which available to stream on HBO Max, chronicles the history of the band comprised of three brothers: Barry Gibb along with Maurice and Robin. The documentary shows them getting their start and scoring hits beginning in the mid-1960s and then becoming undeniable parts of pop culture with their starring role on the “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack. The doc also shows their later efforts as prominent songwriters. Boonstra and Martinez have both scored their first Emmy nomination for Best Nonfiction Picture Editing.
For Boonstra, the idea of cutting a documentary for Frank Marshall is something that he could never have dreamed of. “If I could go back in time and tell 16-year-old Derek, you’re going to be cutting a doc for Frank Marshall, you know, I’d have lost my mind.” However, once he actually started working with Marshall, it became clear that he would be a very amicable person to work with. “He’s one of the chillest dudes. He’s very, very easy going and easy to be around and a very calm collaborator.”
While the pair was very shocked that they scored an Emmy nomination for their work on the film, they really took pride in how well the film did overall, scoring six nominations. “The coolest thing was that we were Emmy nominated across the board. I think the best feeling was seeing that every box was ticked. Our sound was called out, we were thankfully called out. Frank was called out, which is great,” says Martinez. Adding that it was very humbling to be singled out, Boonstra echoed Martinez’s sentiments. “There were a lot of creative cooks in the kitchen, which sometimes can be a challenge, but on this one I think it gelled really well.”