Planning TV Production at The World Games: Ursula Romero had already gained a good first impression of The World Games 2021 at the beginning of October. The Head of Production at International Sports Broadcasting (ISB) was a guest in Birmingham, Alabama at that time, together with an IWGA delegation. As host broadcaster, ISB will broadcast to the world the TV signal of The World Games 2021 (15 - 25 July) with pictures of the highest quality. In the Interview of the Month, Ursula Romero explains the first steps in planning the TV production.
Maybe you would like to let us know more about ISB first?
Ursula Romero: International Sports Broadcasting is a multi-disciplinary sports production company based in Madrid, Spain. Since its creation, ISB has become a bit of a specialist in the area of host broadcasting, and has been involved as such in many large international sporting events all over the world.
Why did ISB apply for the challenge of being host broadcaster for The World Games 2021?
Ursula Romero: ISB is always looking for new challenges, and the idea of taking on TV production of The World Games has always been very appealing to us. The World Games takes a fresh approach to sport, and we believe that the diversity of the sports in the programme and the widespread following of these can be displayed very well on screens around the globe.
What was your experience with The World Games 2017 like?
Ursula Romero: Our first work experience with The World Games in Wroclaw in 2017 was very good. As mentioned above, we were pleasantly surprised by the numbers of great sports, athletes and supporters that The World Games has.
What production standard can one expect from the TV production of The World Games 2021?
Ursula Romero: The standard will be at least as high as in Wroclaw, but of course our aim is to take it a step further, and to make sure that the beautiful venues in Birmingham get shown off as much as possible.
How much equipment (OB vans etc.) do you expect to use?
Ursula Romero: We will use eight mobile units or OB vans in Birmingham, with some exceptions where we may use flight packs that will be installed inside a venue. We will also bring speciality cameras that will give a special touch to the transmission.
How many employees will you have on duty and what tasks will they take on?
Ursula Romero: We will have around 350 employees in Birmingham, taking on any duty that has to do with production: everything from production assistants to live-TV directors. We hope to be able to hire most of these people locally, not only in Birmingham but also from different areas around the US. The actual planning of the production starts around two years before, ideally.
How many production hours are planned, and which formats will be available (live and highlights)?
Ursula Romero: We will produce around 450 hours live, and two daily highlights shows which will be repeated on the 24-hour channel we will transmit every day. The format will be HD of course. The signal will be distributed via satellite over the 24 hours The World Games Channel.
Are there already plans on which parts of a competition will be produced?
Ursula Romero: Right now we are basing our plans on what we produced in Wroclaw. All sports will be covered in some format. We will cover about half of the sports live, and in order to do that we have to negotiate with different takers and stakeholders. Unfortunately, this way we can for some sports sometimes only cover the finals live.
The World Games is a multi-sport event staged every four years by the International World Games Association under the patronage of the International Olympic Committee. The 11th edition of The World Games will be held in Birmingham, Alabama, USA, 15-25 July 2021. 3,600 athletes from over 30 sports and 100 countries will take part in the Games.