Adam Gould keeps the camera outside the classroom


Sergio Montanez

Adam Gould has edited movies featured at major American film festivals.

Capturing the essence of what makes us love a movie so much is more than just casting Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson to every role. It’s the creation of that piece of art, it’s the story of how it came to be, and it’s all the work that was put into it that makes cinema so special and so important in today’s world.

Here at Oakland University, the cinema studies program is ever-expanding and offers its students top of the line equipment for practice and skill application. Adam Gould, production coordinator and professor of cinema studies, has been teaching film production and filmmaking at Oakland University since 2013. 

As a kid, Gould took an interest in cinema from his mom, who would spend much of her time watching movies. As a result, Gould’s time was consumed by watching countless movies and even making movies of his own. He began his collegiate career as a history major before realizing that cinema was his true calling.

“Watching movies and making movies was my homework” he said. “I was like, ‘Woah! This is great!’ That gave me the realization that I could make a career out of this.”

While spending two years abroad in Japan teaching English, Gould became aware that he wanted to pass on what he had learned and teach the importance of cinema to the generations to come. Focusing primarily on editing in graduate school, Gould went on to work in TV production, producing TV shows and commercials and did some freelance work.

In the course of his professional career, Gould has edited three feature length films: “Welcome to Unity,” “Slow Draw” and “Campbell Walker is a Friend of Mine.” All three films have been featured at prominent film festivals across the United States.

“I love editing everything” he said. “Features, shorts, documentaries, I just love editing. I love taking this collection of raw footage, and sound that doesn’t present any clear path to how it should be put together, and creating something out of nothing.”

Gould has wrapped up editing and co-producing his fourth feature length film “Call Me Ishmael.” It is about a group of artist who are inspired by “Moby Dick” and adopt it into various forms of art, including plays, paintings and sculptures. It is has been submitted to multiple film festivals across the country.

Cinema, and editing is more than just ambition to Gould, it is his life, his passions and his love.

“It’s [cinema] an important art form that is really exciting because of how new it is, compared to other forms of art, which are thousands of years old” he said. “It’s this amalgamation of all these art forms coming together in a unique way; it combines the structure of music, the drama of theatre, or the realism of photography. That’s what makes it important.”  

So as you sit comfortably on your recliner, on a cold wintry night, watching “Stranger Things” for the third time in a month on someone else’s Netflix account, think about how special it is for those filmmakers and editor, to make you feel the way you do at that very moment. 

“More people are able to tell their stories, that’s what makes it a really exciting time for filmmakers, and for people who teach filmmaking, because the limitations are very minimal these days,” Gould said. “Just learn how to do it, and do it.”