NewFronts is an annual showcase that allows media companies to give advertisers a first look at their new upcoming shows, movies, and special content. Mile 80 was brought in to work with Amazon and head up the production of all video leading up to the live event held at the Lincoln Center in the heart of New York City.
The most unique element of this project was also the biggest challenge. While we created multiple videos for Amazon’s NewFront, the headline video was an intro to the full live event ahead of Amy Poehler’s introduction. This project was our first experience integrating live theatrical work with pre-created video. Throughout the 5.5 minutes of content, there were two separate moments where we needed to ensure that our video sync’d up perfectly with live theatrical work on stage. The first was a ballerina dancing to new show announcements and the second was a drum line acting as an interlude between the film and TV announcement and Thursday Night Football.
The video announcements at NewFronts ranged from new movies and TV shows to Thursday Night Football and other sporting events being solely distributed via Amazon Prime. Because of this, the assets we needed to craft the announcement videos were owned by many different entities. Organizing files from the NFL, MLB, Amazon Studios, and many others was a big lift.
MILE 80'S SOLUTIONS
To overcome the challenge of marrying our pre-created video with the live theatrical performances we needed to work with each party involved to get a detailed understanding of how every element of the show could be fused together. We set up zoom calls with the NYC Ballet and drum line team to collaborate on our vision for the project and got their feedback on how it could be integrated with the flow of their performances. After we felt comfortable that we understood exactly what needed to be created we wanted to put our heads down and get right into production.
As we headed into production there were many stakeholders we had meet with in order to obtain the assets we needed. Amazon was announcing a very robust roster of content so we first met with their studios to gather the assets from their original content. Then we had to collaborate with Amazon’s partners such as the NFL and MLB to get assets for their announcements.
As we gathered these assets from the various groups we were tasked with organizing the data in a way that they could be pulled for use from end to end of the production pipeline. To achieve this we inserted the assets into our data management systems such as Notion and Dropbox and made sure the whole team was on the same page with the organization structure. While this was a large task that took a lot of time and patience we finally had the pieces of the puzzle together and were ready to deliver.
Live event video is unique from other projects because it is created for a singular press of play. Meaning if any element is in error the whole video becomes pretty much useless. This enhances the need for deep technical proficiencies and allowed our teams 50+ years of experience to shine. We were very confident in our videos, but to put the icing on the cake for this performance our Creative Director, Ryan Sheffer and Head of Brazil Studios, João Miguel flew out to the theater to put finishing touches on the sound, visuals, and timing. When the curtains came up and lights flashed on, everything was perfect for one press of play.
The event was beautiful, and it was so validating to see something we created in such a grand environment. When all was said and done everyone from Amazon and Mile 80 were ecstatic with the results and the live performances matched perfectly with our video. Check out what the event's Executive Producers had to say and watch the highlights from the event here. Be sure to contact Mile 80 for your next live event showcase!
“Thank you Ryan! The work your team produced was not only exceptional, but delivered with such grace under true pressure. I have worked with a lot of production companies over the years but Mile 80 is now top of the list. Your team’s ability to track all of the assets and keep up with changes was simply nothing short of heroic.”
Executive Producer, Freeman Events