Anne V. Coates, ACE was born in Reigate, Surrey, England. Her first love was ballet, which later turned to horses, setting her sights on being a race horse trainer. Then she fell in love with movies, and after a short time as a nurse, she managed to get a job in religious films. She worked as a projectionist, sound assistant and began sending films out to churches, and repairing them on their return the old way—with scrapers and glue!
Coates finally managed to get a job as an assistant in the cutting rooms at Pinewood Studios by slightly exaggerating her experience. After working for a few years as an assistant editor, she got a big break on cutting all the second unit sequences on Walt Disney’s The Story of Robin Hood (1950), and soon after that, she was offered the job on Pickwick Papers (1952) as editor.
Among the films she edited in England are The Truth About Women (1950), The Horse’s Mouth (1958), Tunes of Glory (1960), LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962, for which she received an Academy Award®, an ACE nomination and other various awards), Becket (1964, for which she received an Academy Award® nomination and an ACE nomination), Young Cassidy (1965), The Bofors Gun (1968), The Eagle Has Landed (1976), Murder on the Orient Express (1974, for which she received a BAFTA nomination), The Elephant Man (1980, for which she received an Academy Award® nomination, an ACE Award nomination and a BAFTA nomination), Greystoke: The Story of Tarzan and the Apes (1984), Ragtime (1981), and Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines (1965). She produced and edited The Medusa Touch (1978). She also worked with David Lean as an editorial consultant on the 1989 restoration of LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962).
Coates moved to Los Angeles in 1986 where she continued editing such films as: Raw Deal (1986), Masters of the Universe (1987), I Love You to Death (1990), What About Bob? (1991), Chaplin (1992), In the Line of Fire (1993, for which she won the British Editors Society Award and received an Academy Award® nomination, an ACE nomination and a BAFTA nomination), Congo, Out to Sea (1997), OUT OF SIGHT (1998, for which she received an Academy Award® nomination and ACE nomination), Passion of Mind (2000), Erin Brockovich (2000, for which she received a BAFTA nomination), Sweet November (2001), Taking Lives (2004), Catch and Release (2006), The Golden Compass (2007), Extraordinary Measures (2010), and most recently, Fifty Shades of Grey (2013-14).