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Old October 28th, 2005, 09:34 AM   #1
Scott Parker
Posts: n/a
Women's Football Games, How much to charge?

I have been approached about shooting the next season of our local National Women's Football Association team that is sanctioned by the NFL. There will be 4 home games and 4 away games with the possibility of a bowl-type game. The games must be filmed and sent to the oposing team for the following week or the team will be charged $450 the first time and it increases from there if it happens again.

The general manager is asking me to shoot each game with one camera to meet the rules. He has also asked me to come to a few practices and shoot some b-roll footage during practice and a few games and assemble a season overview/highlight type reel or short documentary about the season.

Of course they will need to pay my travel expenses to the away games, but my question: is anyone here doing this or have any idea what I might need to charge? They get their money from coporate sponsors and as this is still a pretty new concept, he even said to me they have to spend some money to make some money (meaning; promotional dollars to get butts in the seats).

The season runs on Saturday nights from May through the first of July which means I would probably have to turn down most weddings during that time. Weddings are not my main focus and my most expensive package is only 1k, but I do need to consider some lost revenue because of the time of year. There would not be hardly any editing for just sending the games to other teams, beside the highlight reels.

Any thoughts or comments?
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Old October 29th, 2005, 06:41 AM   #2
Major Player
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Venice, FL
Posts: 850
I did some computer consulting work for an NFL expansion team when they were getting started. Here is what I learned...

NFL video is very demanding. Anything less than Betacam is useless. In fact at that time, every coach had a betacam tape player in their office. with a 30 inch monitor, at a then-cost of about $35k each. They need enough detail to be able to read the jersey number and see what someone's hands are doing while shooting wide enough to capture the entire field-wide play from the end-zone. We are talking tiny players at that scale.

NFL video specs are very exact. They shoot the scoreboard between each play, so coach can see time, down, yards to go, etc. Especially important once tapes are edited by dept, since they are not looking at continuous game tapes. At that time, they sent out three dups. One to visitng team, one to next weeks team and one to duplication company, which made copies for every other team in the league at a slower pace. SO Monday morning was busy duplicate time for them.

One they had inbound tapes, they re-edited to make specific situation tapes for every dept. Offense, defense, special teams, red-zone plays, third downs, punts, kickoffs, last two minute tapes, etc. And they needed everything by Tuesday morning. It was a full-time job for one guy and a few part-timers with about a million dollars in equipment, and he hired contract shooters for the games (at least one end zone and one sideline camera required, most teams did both endzones if they had a place to shoot from). Generally home team provided tape to visiting team also, so that they only had to cover home games.

So you should look into the specs they will need for this new league. If it is same as NFL, I doubt you can do it with your DV camera (maybe with HD or HDV?). That requirement to show the whole play yet have enough detail was pretty tough. There may be some tight time requirements that force you to buy (or rent locally) multiple duplication decks. The other stuff about what/how to shoot you can learn, but they will likely want to edit everything (inbound, not outbound) too, once they think it thru. It could be a very nice gig for the season.

I hope this helps some, even though I learned all of this 10 years ago (and from computer side of the problem) and some may have changed. You probably should have the team manager pay you to get in touch with league and give him a report and budget for what he will really need to get the job done. Or have him hire me, it would be fun to revisit this ten years later (as a video guy this time) and I write good consulting reports....
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