Crew West and UFC

August 22nd, 2018

Over the past couple of years our good friends at ESPN have been hiring us to cover UFC events in vegas.  With the recent acquisition of UFC rights, ESPN is ramping up their coverage and have brought us along for the ride.  In July we helped produce a new show they are taking on the road to cover major UFC PPV events – Ariel & the Bad Guy – with Ariel Helwani and Chael Sonnen.  Thus far this new show has been at two events, one in Las Vegas and the most recent in Los Angeles, with 3 more events in the books for Crew West for the remainder of the year.  We’ll be heading to Dallas for UFC 228, then back again in Vegas for the huge fight between Connor McGregor & Khabib Nurmagomedov, and then we’ll wrap up the year in December for the final card of the the year.  For these shows our crews provide most of the production support.  Fight week coverage usually includes a couple of live shots, weigh in & press conferece coverage, and UFC Media Day interviews with the fighters.  For fight night we man two cameras and light the set that ESPN ships in for the hour long post-fight show.

2018 Cactus League Media Day – Arizona Diamondbacks

March 13th, 2018

When you sit down to watch a sporting event on your day off, you generally do not think of the sheer amount of work that goes into every aspect of the broadcast.  It is simple entertainment and nothing beyond that.  However, even the smallest things in these broadcasts can require an immense amount of work.  Take for example the little interviews and soundbites that air during the lulls of play during a baseball game.  Most would probably balk at the idea that these short little segments would require around five to six hours to shoot for each team.  However, this is indeed how long it generally takes.  Across the nation, independent production companies are hired by the national networks (such as ESPN) that broadcast professional sporting events to tape these segments.  One of these production companies is Crew West Inc.

Crew West works in tandem with ESPN producers to create a nuanced and artistic element to a small, yet extremely important part of a major baseball broadcast.  For example, take the shoot wherein Crew West teamed up with ESPN to interview a few star players on the Arizona Diamondbacks.  The crew began work early in the morning before the sun even shined in the sky, and went about setting up a professional set with a chain link fence set against a blue/gray backdrop for the interviews.  Here I was able to see the true nature of a professional production; hard and dirty work.  The best I could liken this production to was a construction site, but instead of building a skyscraper we were constructing a piece of art meant to immerse viewers in enjoying their favorite baseball team.  It was quite impressive to see how quickly this entire set was set up inside of an umpire’s locker room where space was tight and hot.  Even more impressive was the players we were able to interview and interact with.  I met and even shook hands with a few of the Diamondbacks major players such as Paul Goldschmidt and Robbie Ray.

The entire experience made me appreciate not only the profession I am in but the ability of the crew from Crew West to work so efficiently under such a tight deadline.  Next time I go to watch a Diamondbacks game I hope to see one of the interviews I partook in and be able to say, “I helped make that a possibility.”

-written by ASU intern Jakob Wastek

Play Ball Shoot with MLB Network

May 5th, 2017

Crew West teamed up with MLB Network today at the Chicago Cubs spring training facility in Mesa, Arizona to shoot for the upcoming show: Play Ball. Sean Casey was on camera with Anthony Rizzo for the half-hour show. I found this shoot to be different than other shoots I’ve been on because we didn’t have to set up equipment a few hours prior. Instead, this was considered as a ‘laid back’ shoot. Crew West’s talented cameraman Andy Patterson was alongside a camerman from MLB while Sean was interviewing Anthony Rizzo on one of the baseball fields. Shortly thereafter, Sean stayed on the field with Rizzo while he was doing drill demonstrations for the show. While this was happening, fans were behind the gates hoping to get Anthony Rizzo’s attention. This was an exciting sight to see because we were outside all morning, fans were all around, and of course, the weather was beautiful. On top of that, I experienced one of the best photo bombs I’ve ever seen in a photo that was taken of me.
-written by ASU intern Delaney Wood