One of the most important attributes in factual TV programme making is being able to break the ice and bond with your contributors. I’m quite lucky in that I was born and bred in a family pub, so talking to strangers came quite naturally to me. You know you’ve cracked it when you make someone laugh, but you don’t need to be a comedian to get people on your side.
One of my trickiest assignments in this respect was filming the cricket IPL in India. Many players didn’t want an irritating cameraman pestering them for behind the scenes footage when they were trying to unwind between matches. The first few days of my first shoot during IPL 2009 was an absolute nightmare. All time great cricketers, my heroes, were giving me the evil eye and refusing to be filmed. How could I turn this round?
On the dance floor obviously! Thankfully the team I was filming won their second match and had a post match party. I threw some insane ‘dad dancing’ shapes – and the next day team skipper Shane Warne said that watching me boogie was the most “entertaining 15 minutes of his life”. Ice broken – game on. He even asked me to dance to boost team morale in the dressing room before the next match – here’s the video…
I got and kept various IPL teams on board for the next four seasons with a combination of dance moves and magic tricks. Magic also works well when filming children. Talking football, playing pool, cracking jokes – there are various ways to put contributors at their ease. That’s why I like to see bar work, retail jobs and restaurant experience on a CV. It shows an ability to talk to people. If you’ve worked in service industries, make sure you mention it to potential media employers, it might help you secure the gig!
For more media job finding tips I’d suggest you watch a video of my zoom workshop ‘How To Get Into The Media Industry & Runner Skills’.
The video covers the following: generating media contacts, introductory e mails, media CV finessing, job interview skills, TV runner skills, TV researcher skills and career strategy. And you get helpful job hunting links too.
For more info about the video package – which includes a course handout and media CV template – e mail firstname.lastname@example.org
For more media advice blogs go to https://www.directproductions.co.uk/blogs