More Than a Game: Packaging for TV

The project is really starting to pick up pace now as we get into the final month before the hand in. With the radio package complete and the written article underway it is now time to turn attention to the TV package element and this instalment of More Than a Game will look at this in more detail.

The demands of television are probably the most challenging of the three main forms of journalism that the project involves. However, if done well it can also prove to be the most interesting and engaging part of the project. The challenge primarily centres around ensuring you always consider not just the visuals, but the sound as well. The most well framed and captivating interview can be severely held back by poor audio.

By going to shoot for video with no-one else, this task is made even more difficult. Whilst carrying out the interview you want to give your full focus to the interviewee as they are the reason you are there and they have given up their time to talk to you. Nevertheless, it is vital that sound levels are checked and equally the shot is set up correctly with the subject in focus, white balancing complete to ensure the colours are correct and ensuring that there is no over exposure.

Building a network

After carrying out an initial shoot at Southampton Solent University’s sports science laboratories discussing the use of the facilities by football clubs to carry out physiological tests, I was put in touch with a member of the sports science department at AFC Bournemouth. This was a fantastic result for the project to be able to go into a club and find out exactly how sports science has an influence on what they do at the football club.

Although I can only submit one TV package I set about editing both as the filming at Solent University was still valuable and could play a part in one of the online added value elements. The footage from going to speak to the sports scientist was superior however and I also got the opportunity to take a camera along to a training session.

This was great to see how the sports scientist’s role works in day-to-day training, but also gave me the opportunity to film some footage of the players training that would make great b-roll in the package.

Laying down the frames

Upon completion of filming it is time to begin to edit the footage together into a concise and informative package. Using Adobe software again like for radio, although their Premiere Pro video editing over the Audition audio software, beginning work on the package was relatively straight forward.

I had drafted together which footage of training I wanted to use and what answers from the interview I was going to use. Having filmed an interview of just over 10 minutes in length, condensing this down to a two-minute piece including an introduction and outro voiceover required a harsh critique of the recorded interview.

The phase of planning out the package before editing made the actual editing process fairly straightforward and within a couple of hours I had a draft version to share with my supervisor.


Telling the story

Alongside the interview, voiceovers recorded in the radio studio are required to introduce the package and link together any sections of the interview that are from different parts of the recording.

Having already planned a rough outline of what I wanted to say in the script before shooting, the footage I had collected linked well with the voiceover. There were some minor tweaks of words here or there, but these did not take long to do. As I will explain shortly, with plans to reshoot some more b-roll for the start and end of the package the script does require a rewrite and record, but any time spent on this will certainly be worthwhile for the gains in the finished package.

Loose ends

On review with my supervisor, we felt that the package needed stronger footage at the beginning and end to hold the package together. The actual interview content and footage from the training session was strong, but there was something missing.

I decided that I will film some footage at the next football match I attend, mostly of the players warming up and plan to use this to pad either end of the package and provide some contextual footage that weaves in neatly with my scripted voiceovers.

With the TV package almost at a similar stage to the radio element, focus will now revert back to tightening up the written article and doing the newspaper layout in the style of the project’s target market, The Guardian.


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