Thomas Stanford Dies: ‘West Side Story’ Film Editor Was 93


Film editor Thomas Stanford, known best for his Oscar-winning work on West Side Story, died Saturday, his family reported. He was 93.

Stanford Family

Over a career that spanned nearly three decades, Stanford worked on features including The Yakuza, The Legend of the Lone Ranger, and his first credited work, Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s 1959 film Suddenly Last Summer, but it was his work on 1961’s West Side Story for which he received his sole best film editing Oscar. The film itself won nine additional Oscars including best picture (Robert Wise), director (Wise and Jerome Robbins), actress (Rita Moreno), supporting actor (George Chakiris), color cinematography (Daniel Fapp), color art direction/set decoration (Boris Leven, Victor Gangelin), color costume design (Irene Sharaff), sound (Fred Hynes, Gordon Sawyer) and music (Saul Chaplin, Johnny Green, Sid Ramin, Irwin Kostal).

Stanford’s television work includes Route 66, Burke’s Law, Hec Ramsey, Mad Bull and Before and After.

Born in Germany and educated in Switzerland and England, he moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 1987.

Stanford is survived by his partner Sherry Bendickson, daughter Nina and son Adam, and two grandchildren.

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