As Access launches its inaugural On Location supplement, available to read here, we chat to Eventserv about how event suppliers can crack the film and TV sectors.
The British Film Industry is booming. Leading studios are full to capacity, taking record amounts of bookings from international film-makers allowing studios to pursue dramatic expansions. The careful management of these blockbuster projects is vital in ensuring efficient but jaw-dropping productions.
Barry Lawford – EventServ Scotland’s regional manager – discusses some of the projects EventServ is currently involved with and explains the constraints of working in an ever-changing industry.
What are the challenges of providing event solutions for the film and TV industry?
The industry is so varied that even projects that are currently undergoing filming continuously change. Crews have to work to very tight timescales – with street shoots having to be set up, altered and packed away at the end of the filming day. Infrastructure solution companies have to provide quick and efficient solutions all across the country within rigid timeframes. If these appointments are missed, huge financial costs and filming delays are incurred.
It is vital that stringent prior planning takes place to make sure every detail runs smoothly.
What products do you supply to the industry and why are they key to Britain’s film and TV industry continuing prosperity?
A combination of camera and lighting platforms means that high quality film productions can be produced anywhere – quickly, efficiently and safely as seen in our work at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. Health and safety is vital in an industry with expensive, fragile equipment as well as huge crew numbers working at height.
EventServ equips production companies all across the UK with stages, grandstands and gantries allowing filming to take place on high quality, flexible equipment. The combination of grandstands and stages are often vital for audience participation but also provide the perfect solution to weather-proofing filming days. We’ve experienced this with our recent work for an Irn-Bru commercial and our event infrastructure solutions for Duel in the Pool.
The fluidity of the film industry means adaptability of systems is essential. EventServ provides draping to ensure a comfortable working environment and to shut out light to ensure shots are of the highest quality with little external distraction.
Tell us more about the TV and film projects that EventServ has been involved with. How did you become involved with these projects?
EventServ has worked in the film and TV industry for many years but with the recent rise in British films and the increase in international film-makers choosing the UK as a location for filming, we’ve seen a growth in interest for the services we provide in both the UK and Ireland.
We have a large product range and our modular Layher system has made EventServ a supplier of choice for the film industry. Word has spread to suppliers and production companies looking for impressive support solutions.
Our work with Irn-Bru saw us provide a commercial shoot in Kelvingrove Bowls Club in Glasgow with a grandstand. Shot before the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, the area was particularly sensitive as international stars descended on the area. Working to tight deadlines in a public space is a difficult task. In these situations, planning is vital, especially with weather constraints and when the filming area is sensitive.
We also turned Tollcross International Swimming Centre in Glasgow into the TV event – Duel in the Pool. It’s a difficult task to make a venue TV ready; adding cameras and lighting rigs to a swimming pool is fraught with danger, but the event worked out superbly and attracted a huge crowd for a thrilling events programme.
EventServ’s biggest project so far has been providing infrastructure solutions for the filming of Mrs Brown’s Boys D’Movie. In fact, if you watch carefully, we have a starring role in film. It’s been great to see international events happening in Scotland and all management solutions being provided by a British business.
What tips would you give on how to become a go-to business for production companies?
This is a dynamic industry so you need to be able to react to demands. Then you need to deliver what is needed safely, efficiently and consistently while remaining flexible as the demands of the film and TV industry varies from day to day.
Access‘ On Location supplement will go out to subscribers on 13 July.