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Header image for article Deploying & Supporting Remote Camera Kits for the 2021 Golden Globes

Deploying & Supporting Remote Camera Kits for the 2021 Golden Globes

At this point in time, audiences have become accustomed to the idea of award shows incorporating some version of remote or virtual collaboration, especially as travel restrictions keep much of the talent at home. So when Dick Clark Productions chose to reunite the Emmys producing team for this year's Golden Globes and reached out to Mike Nichols, AbelCine Business Development Manager, our previous experience with the remote camera and lighting kits proved invaluable. We were able to build, set up, deliver, and remotely control a number of identical "drop kits" that were delivered to various nominee locations across the country.

From the Rental and Integration teams who built and tested the kits, to the tech specialists who ran real-time tech support, this production was truly a team effort, and it paid off as our custom kits delivered consistently and efficiently for the show's production.

 

The Build

Dick Clark Productions, producers of this year's Golden Globes, hired much of the same team that worked on last year's Emmy Awards. Taking what we had learned from the experience of that show, our Rental and Integration teams created a streamlined version of the Emmy kits based around the Canon EOS 5D Mark IV. The 5D Mark IVs were once again chosen for their image quality and their robust remote control functionality via the EOS Utility software. Additionally, each kit included a Litepanels Astra 1x1, Rode shotgun mic, Canon 24-70mm zoom lens, and a 27" iMac.

In total, 14 kits were built; each was put together and throroughly tested by the team in our Brooklyn location.

Each camera kit included the Canon 5D Mark IV, Litepanels Astra 1x1, and iMac.
Each remote camera kit included the Canon 5D Mark IV, Litepanels Astra 1x1, and an iMac.
The Canon 5D Mark IVs were chosen for their image quality and robust remote control functionality.
The Canon 5D Mark IVs were chosen for their image quality and robust remote control functionality.
David Knappenberger, Technical Manager – Rentals, builds the remote drop kits.
David Knappenberger, Technical Manager – Rentals, builds the remote drop kits.
Each kit was thoroughly tested in our Brooklyn location.
Each kit was thoroughly tested in our Brooklyn location before being deployed to the talent's location.

 

The Deployment

Once all the elements of the kits had been assembled, they needed to be properly packed and shipped so that other members of the AbelCine team team (as well as some on-location local ACs) could unpack them and set up quickly. Each of the nominees we were responsible for was located in a different location, ranging from as close as Manhattan to as far away as Montana and New Mexico. In total, we provided 14 kits to nominees including: John Boyega, Matthew Rhys, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Anne Murphy, Jim Parsons, Laura Linney, Julia Garner, Amanda Seyfried, Mark Ruffalo, Cynthia Nixon, Darren Star, Bob Odenkirk, Ethan Hawke, and Glenn Close.

Locations ranged from large hotel rooms, to tiny rental spaces, to the talent's own residence, so the delivery and set up teams had to be ready for anything (including set changes from the Globes producers).

The remote drop kits had to set up in different locations such as hotel rooms.
The remote drop kits had to set up in different locations such as hotel rooms.
Lin-Manuel Miranda @Lin_Manuel Tweet
The camera kits had to be packed up and shipped to locations around the country.
The camera kits had to be packed up and shipped to locations around the country.

 

Tech Support

As the kits were being delivered and set up, it was the Tech Support team (consisting of AbelCine technical specialists) that helped bring the cameras online, troubleshoot any connectivity issues, and occasionally walk the talent – or sometimes the talent's assistant – through small tweaks of the camera or lighting setup. The support team worked from multiple locations in the Tri-State Area, as well as the "Control Room" in our NYC office.

Throughout the weekend and during the actual awards broadcast, all the members of the Tech Support team were on call, staying in communication with each other and the show's producers. As with any live production, a few last-minute changes were required, but they were handled quickly and efficiently either remotely or via our team members in the field.

Jeff Lee rubs tech support from another location, communicating with our BK Control Room and the Globes Producers.
Jeff Lee, Director of Education, runs tech support from another location, communicating with our BK Control Room and the Globes producers.
Our technicans set up a remote control room in our Brooklyn location.
Our technicans set up a remote control room in our Brooklyn location.

 

The Live Show

To learn more about how the remote kits were used during the live show and to see them in action, check out the press links and videos below, and make sure to visit NBC's YouTube channel for more.

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