We are thrilled that our 3 returning series for Channel 4 this month have all appeared in the top 15 shows for Channel 4 in the weekly viewing figures. SAS: Who Dares Wins made first place on a number of occasions and has exceeded expectation by reaching almost 3.5 million viewers!
All three of these documentaries, The Secret Life of 4 & 5 Year Olds, The Secret Life of The Zoo and SAS: Who Dares Wins, can be viewed here if you’ve missed out:
Last year we had the pleasure of working on a new BBC Documentary for BBC Scotland called Fish Town, which now airs on Monday evenings at 7.30pm. We travelled to Peterhead to rig remote cameras on two of their fishing boats before they set sail to Rockall and the Shetland Isles in search of a good catch. This programme looks at the lives and work of the people putting fish on our plates on a daily basis and is an incredible insight into life at sea in one of the UK’s biggest fishing ports.
“The fishing boat Reliance, skippered by John Clarke, heads to a fishing ground off the Shetland Isles in search of whitefish and prawns. Joining John on board is his 21-year-old son David, who hopes one day to take over as skipper. Another Peterhead boat, the Ocean Endeavour, heads out to one of the UK’s most remote fishing grounds, Rockall, in search of haddock. Skipper John Buchan tries out a rookie fisherman, 18-year-old Nathan Foreman. This is Nathan’s first trip on a deep sea trawler and John hopes to train him up as a fully fledged deckhand. But Nathan’s first trip is going to be uncomfortable – Storm Hector is blowing in, bringing with it gale-force winds.” – BBC
If you have the good fortune of living in Scotland then you can tune into this 6 part series every Monday, if not then catch up here on BBC iPlayer:
Last week saw the return of 3 incredible shows we’ve had the pleasure of working on over the last year. We’ve had such a great response to all three series and we are delighted to be a part of the teams that work so hard to make them. Thank you for all your tweets, messages and comments; keep tuning in, we can assure you they get better and better!
‘SAS: Who Dares Wins’ airs every Sunday at 9pm on Channel 4.
‘The Secret Life of The Zoo’ airs every Tuesday at 8pm on Channel 4.
‘The Secret Life of 4 and 5 Year Olds’ airs every Thursday at 8pm on Channel 4.
Keep an eye out for upcoming Case Studies on our website, giving you an insight into how they are made and a look behind the scenes.
If you have missed any of the above please catch up here on All 4:
THE SECRET OF LIFE OF 4 & 5 YEAR OLDS
The Complete Camera Company have now wrapped on the new series of ‘The Secret Life of Kids’. As always it was a pleasure to work with RDF on this much loved programme. We spent 4 weeks in total filming children in a ‘school’ environment and thoroughly enjoyed watching them explore new challenges and build new relationships. Filming took place in a school in London, a location we had used before that was perfect for the format of the show. The result will be a 4 x 60 minute series of 4 and 5 year olds.
Teresa Watkins, co-creator and original Executive Producer of the show has written a fascinating book inspired by the events that took place during filming, “The Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds: what little people can tell us about big people.” It can be purchased here and offers an amazing insight into the making of the show and the enormity of what was learnt during the process:
Thank you again to the production team and all the parents and children involved, we look forward to seeing it very soon!
THE GRIERSON AWARDS 2018 – NOMINATION
The Complete Camera Company are once again delighted to have a fixed rig documentary in the final nominations of The Grierson Awards!
SAS: Who Dares Wins has received a nomination for Best Constructed Documentary Series this year and the ceremony will take place on the evening of Monday November 5th at The Queen Elizabeth Hall, London.
We are also pleased to announce that 999: What’s Your Emergency? was shortlisted in the Best Entertaining Documentary.
A full list of nominations can be found on The Grierson Trust website:
We are so pleased to still be a part of the making of these fantastic returning series and would like to thank both Blast! Films and Minnow Films for involving us in such brilliant projects!
SAS: WHO DARES WINS – RETURNS!
The Complete Camera Company are delighted that SAS: Who Dares Wins will be returning for a 4th series this year. For the first time in its history the process will now be available to both men and women that meet the selection criteria. Please visit the link below to read a little more about the production and to access an application form.
DO YOU THINK YOU’VE GOT WHAT IT TAKES?
The Complete Camera Company now have a completely bespoke portable gallery trailer, perfect for fixed rig documentaries. The mobile gallery is ideal for documentaries being filmed in a variety of locations over a short period of time, shows being made in remote areas and fly on the wall television being shot in houses or small spaces. It saves the cost and hassle of building on site galleries or porta-cabin hire, reduces intrusive activity with contributors and travels with The Complete Camera Company crew with ease.
The trailer is now available for hire or for use on any of our upcoming documentaries!
WHAT WOULD YOUR KID DO?
The fixed rig series we shot at the end of last year, What Would Your Kid Do? has proved to be a huge success. ITV’s latest show secretly films children in a school carrying out tasks while their parents are challenged to guess how their children will react.
The family that predict the most correctly go through to the final, when the children get to choose the prizes they take home. The show provides a fascinating and often hilarious insight into the minds of 5, 6 and 7 year olds.
It was a pleasure to shoot and we really think you should tune in on Tuesdays at 8pm to see what all the fuss is about! If you’ve missed any episodes you can catch up here…
THE SECRET LIFE OF THE ZOO
The final Episode of The Secret Life of the Zoo has now aired on Channel 4, so if you missed it please tune into All 4 to catch up on some of the incredible episodes we filmed last year at Chester Zoo. Using 12 cameras to shoot a variety of enclosures, we spent 4 months in total capturing the lives of these amazing, often rare and endangered, animals.
Our ‘Making Of’ piece will be up on our credits page very shortly, where you will be able to read about the methods used and challenges faced when deploying a fixed-rig into one of the most popular Zoos in Britain.
Our latest fixed-rig documentary for ITV, Transformation Street, is now airing on Thursday nights at 9pm.
The series follows various people undergoing life-changing surgery to realign their gender and provides an incredible insight into the highs and lows of each individual’s journey.
We teamed up with Renegade to shoot this amazing documentary and we are delighted at the audience response so far. Tune in tonight or catch up on ITV Player!
THE GRIERSON’S – WE WON!
We are delighted to confirm that 999: What’s Your Emergency collected the award for Best Entertaining Documentary at The Grierson Awards. We are always thrilled to have nominations at such a prestigious awards ceremony, but to take this one home was a real honour – in a tough category ‘Series 3’ really stood out this year and we’d like to say a huge CONGRATULATIONS to the team for producing such a great show.
THE GRIERSON TRUST – NOMINATIONS
The Complete Camera Company have an incredible 6 shortlisted nominations for this years Grierson Awards:
SAS: Who Dares Wins
999: What’s Your Emergency?
Secret Life of Four and Five Year Olds
The Gun Shop
The Trial: Murder In The Family
Mr v Mrs: Call The Mediator
A full list of nominations can be found on The Grierson Trust website:
We are over the moon that fixed rig documentaries have made such an impact on audiences over the last 12 months and these nominations are testament to the dedicated work the production teams put in to bringing exciting new ideas to screen.
The final nominations, announced today, include both SAS: Who Dares Wins and 999: What’s Your Emergency? The awards ceremony will take place on Wednesday November 6th at The Mermaid and we all have our fingers crossed for a win!
THE SECRET LIFE OF KIDS – WRAPPED!
We are thrilled to have completed filming on the 3rd Series of ‘The Secret Life of Kids’ for Channel 4. We always shoot this series over the summer holiday so that the children can take part without missing school and this year was no different. We filmed a selection of 4 and 5 year olds over the 6-week period and this will result in 6 x 60 minute programmes.
Following the huge success of Series 1 & 2 we know that the return of this show is much anticipated so the pressure was on! Preparation for The Complete Camera Company started back in April, with location recce’s, technical planning and kit organisation. At the start of July a 12-tonne-truck left the warehouse to travel to the chosen location and following a 6 day rig, filming began.
The Complete Camera Company were very pleased with the smooth running of the whole filming process and feel confident that the viewers are going to love the content! Huge congratulations and thank you to RDF Television for another successful shoot and we look forward to seeing the finished product.
DR CHRISTIAN WILL SEE YOU NOW RETURNS
We are teaming up with Firecracker Films again for the Second Series of Dr Christian Will See You Now.
The production team are currently sifting through the vast number of contributors wanting to take part. This show provides a rare opportunity for everyday people to see Dr Christian Jessen in his private surgery, where he will help to resolve a wide range of medical problems with his highly qualified team.
We were delighted at the success of the first series and audiences are very excited about its return. Prep is well underway and we look forward to starting shooting very soon!
Follow Dr Christian and Firecracker on Twitter for regular updates:
999: WHAT’S YOUR EMERGENCY? – NEW SERIES AIRS MONDAY
We are pleased to confirm that Series 4 of 999: What’s Your Emergency? will return on Monday 24th July at 9pm on Channel 4. We filmed it at the beginning of the year in and around Wiltshire, following the emergency services in all three departments fighting crime and saving lives. It is an incredibly diverse fixed rig documentary, exploring a wide range of incidents faced by our wonderful emergency service personnel and is not to be missed!
We can’t wait to hear the audience response to this much anticipated series.
If you want to catch up on previous episodes, read about the show or see clips and extras before it starts, just click here…
THE TRIAL – A MURDER IN THE FAMILY, ONLINE NOW
Fixed-rig documentary met drama in this compelling 5-part series airing nightly over a single week. Filmed in a court room, this documentary told the story of a fictional murder case tried in a real court. We wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone involved, especially Dragonfly for using The CCC to film all of the fixed-rig content. We have received such positive feedback and the great news is that all 5 episodes can be found on Channel 4 Catch Up Online. Don’t miss this eye-opening series, which shows the inner workings of the legal system using real jury members and legal professionals.
Our Case Study on The Trial: A Murder in the Family will go live on our website this week, providing an in-depth evaluation of how we made the show.
SAS: WHO DARES WINS 3 – APPLICATIONS OPEN
We were delighted last year when the hugely successful SAS: Who Dares Wins was commissioned for a 3rd series. We have thoroughly enjoyed our journey with Minnow Films so far and can’t wait to bring another series to the Channel 4 audience.
Applications for the series are now open and forms can be found online on Minnow’s website here:
This will be a once in a lifetime experience for a handpicked group of civilians so get your applications in now for a chance to take part!
THE WORLD ACCORDING TO KIDS – STARTING APRIL 13TH
We took the fixed rig around the UK last year to film 70 children, aged between 6 and 11, facing real-life challenges. The 6 x 60 episodes explore a variety of practical and emotional hurdles the children have to overcome and provide humorous, heartwarming viewing.
The World According To Kids will start on Thursday April 13th at 8pm on BBC2. Read more about the show here…
THREE WIVES, ONE HUSBAND – TONIGHT AT 9PM
Don’t miss the first episode of this ground breaking documentary filmed in the Mormon community of Rockland Ranch in Utah. Here are some great interviews and press pieces to keep you going, and our own ‘Making Of’ case study will follow soon…
DR CHRISTIAN WILL SEE YOU NOW – TONIGHT 9PM
Don’t miss the first episode of brand new fixed rig documentary ‘Dr Christian Will See You Now’ which aires tonight on W at 9pm. We were delighted to shoot this show as it offers a brilliant insight into some really tricky medical and emotional problems, and is fronted by the brilliant Dr Christian Jessen of Embarrassing Bodies. We teamed up with Firecracker to open the doors to unresolved medical conditions, making sure every single moment was caught on camera. We hope you enjoy it!
HOW WE FILMED ‘SECRET LIFE’ – BY PANASONIC
When we filmed The Secret Life of 4, 5 & 6 Year Olds we used 25 Panasonic AW-HE60S to film the children both inside and outside the school, producing a total of 6 x 60 minute episodes for each series. Here is Panasonic’s piece on how we achieved it…
THREE WIVES, ONE HUSBAND ANNOUNCED
Having spent months in Utah last year filming an incredible Mormon community at The Rock, Channel 4 will be airing the first episode of the resulting series Three Wives, One Husband this Thursday March 23rd at 9pm. This is unprecedented access to polygamist Mormons, including Abel Morrison and his 3 wives, using a variety of single camera filming and fixed rig technology to show the world their unique way of life.
The CCC and our crew had a truly amazing experience with the families at Rockland Ranch and we are very fortunate to have been asked to facilitate the rig for Keo Films. We cannot wait for everyone to see this unique project come to life!
DR CHRISTIAN WILL SEE YOU NOW – MARCH 22ND
We can now confirm that our next fixed rig documentary, Dr Christian Will See You Now, will begin airing on March 22nd on Channel W for UKTV. This brand new documentary produced by Firecracker Films looks at a huge variety of medical problems, dealt with in the intimacy of Dr Christian Jessen’s clinic and offering a once in a lifetime consultation with the man himself and his team of highly experienced professionals.
We filmed the series at the end of last year just outside London and it will be made up of 8 x 60 minute programmes.
Dr Christian said of the programme, “This exciting format allows me to do what I love doing most – being a doctor and also educating the public; discussing those troubling issues that are so common and yet never talked about enough.”
We are thrilled with the outcome and look forward to hearing the feedback of the viewing public in a few weeks time!
THE SECRET LIFE OF 4 & 5 YEAR OLDS – RECOMMISSIONED
We are delighted to announce that The Secret Life of 4 and 5 Year Olds has been recommissioned by Channel 4 again and will be filmed this year. If you would like to apply for your child to take part in the next series, then RDF Television are now taking applications and you can fill out the form here…
To catch up on the final episodes of this current series, read about the show and view clips and extras, please follow the link below…
A NIGHT AT THE BROADCAST AWARDS FOR THE CCC
The CCC had the pleasure of attending the 2017 Broadcast Awards last week on Wednesday February 1st at Grosvenor House, hosted by Jonathan Ross. We had a table right in the middle of all the action, with 12 of our guests, including staff and colleagues. The evening began with a VIP reception in the ballroom, where we gathered for drinks before being taken into the main hall for dinner. We tucked into a 3 course meal and took the time in between courses to catch up with lots of people we’d worked with over the last year. This included teams from RDF, Dragonfly, Minnow Films, Channel 4 and lots of producers and directors that had worked on our fixed rig documentaries.
Following dinner we had a brief set from Jonathan Ross before the awards began, something we enjoyed far more than Piers Morgan – a nominee on the night – who became the subject of many of Ross’ jokes…! We had two shows nominated this year, SAS: Who Dares Wins, and The Secret Life of 4 and 5 Year Olds, and unfortunately they were up against each other! But the silverware wasn’t for us on the evening, it went to the extremely popular The Real Marigold Hotel. It didn’t dampen our spirits however, and we moved through to the ballroom after the ceremony to continue the party.
After a few hours back in the ballroom and on the dance floor we went our separate ways, very proud of our nominations, the work we were able to contribute to in 2016 and looking forward to next year! Thank you to Broadcast and all our guests for a fantastic night.
All the winners on the evening can be seen here…
THE 2017 BROADCAST AWARDS – NOT LONG NOW!
The 2017 Broadcast Awards will take place on February 1st at Grosvenor House, so there’s not long to wait and we are very much looking forward to attending! Jonathan Ross has been confirmed to present again and the shortlist can be seen here…
We are also very happy to confirm that the ‘cake-eating’ scene from Secret Life of 4 Year Olds has been nominated for Timeline TV Moment Of The Year. This award is voted for by guests on the night so fingers crossed!
In the meantime, Broadcast have compiled the most read Facilities Stories of the year here…
SPIES: WHAT’S REAL & WHAT’S FAKE?
Audiences have been reassured by this Radio Times article that Spies really is as authentic and genuine experience as possible. Have a little read here…
SPIES – AIRS THURSDAY AT 9PM ON CHANNEL 4
Our next show, Spies, will start this Thursday January 5th on Channel 4 at 9pm. This fixed-rig documentary follows three former spies who will put fifteen men and women to the test, to see if they have what it takes to make it in the world of espionage. We filmed ‘Spies’ for Minnow Films last year in a variety of exciting locations and cannot wait for it to air!
Catch up on episodes and programme information here:
And see the all new trailer here:
2017 BROADCAST AWARDS NOMINATIONS!
The 2017 Broadcast Awards Shortlist has been released and we are thrilled to announce that we have TWO programmes in the Best Popular Factual Programme category. Both SAS: Who Dares Wins and The Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds are nominated. We are incredibly proud to have facilitated these highly entertaining and successful documentaries and we will be out in full force on February 1st to attend the annual Broadcast Awards Ceremony. Congratulations to everyone involved and thank you! The full list of nominees can be found here…
SAS: WHO DARES WINS WILL RETURN
We are delighted to announce that following the huge success of Series 2, The Jungle Phase, SAS: Who Dares Wins has been commissioned for a 3rd Series. Details for applications will be available soon on Minnow Films website if you think you want to give it a shot! Huge congratulations to everyone involved!
GRIERSON AWARD WINNERS!
Best Entertaining Documentary – The Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds
The CCC attended The 44th Annual Grierson Awards on Monday evening at The Mermaid Theatre, where the best documentaries of the year are celebrated over 14 different categories and awarded for “quality, integrity, creativity, originality and overall excellence.” The evening was a fantastic showcase of groundbreaking, brave, heartwarming and hilarious films and it was an honour to have 3 of our documentaries amongst them. We were treated to Jon Culshaw’s brilliant array of comic impressions, with appearances from the likes of Idris Elba, Ed Balls and Louis Theroux. The evening culminated in drinks and dinner where we enjoyed a catch up with our friends and colleagues from Minnow Films, RDF, Renegade and Channel 4. We are delighted to have won Best Entertaining Documentary for The Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds – huge congratulations and thanks to RDF for their continued passion and for choosing The CCC to film such a wonderful project!
Here is Ben Hoffmann with Executive Producer Teresa Watkins and the Grierson itself…
THE GUN SHOP Programme Information
Looking forward to the upcoming unprecedented one-off documentary about a Gun Shop in The USA? Then read this…
‘GUNSHOP’ ANNOUNCED FOR CHANNEL 4
We are thrilled to confirm that our next documentary will air on Channel 4 at 9pm on Thursday November 3rd. We rigged a Gun Shop in Michigan during the Summer with the brilliant team at Rogan Productions and we cannot wait for viewers to see this extraordinary insight into gun culture and the issues around legal gun ownership in the USA.
SAS: WHO DARES WINS ARTICLE
CCC Director Paul O’Connor teams up with Series Producer Sophie Leonard to write a piece on the making of SAS: Who Dares Wins Series 2, in the Ecuadorian Jungle…
FOUR NOMINATIONS AT THE GRIERSON AWARDS 2016
The Grierson Awards 2016 for British Documentaries are fast approaching and the shortlist has been revealed. The Complete Camera Company are honoured to have 3 programmes up for 4 nominations this year, with SAS: Who Dares Wins, The Tribe and Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds all receiving nods in various categories. Special mention must go to CCC Director Ben Hoffmann who also camera operated on The Vote for Channel 4, shortlisted in the Best Arts Documentary category this year.
The Grierson Awards will take place on November 7th at The Mermaid, London, following a two-stage judging process in which the panel will decide on the final four nominations, including the winner, in each category. The judges will be looking for, “evidence of quality, integrity, creativity, originality and overall excellence.”
The shortlist can be viewed here, along with information about the ceremony…
999 CLIPS & EXTRAS
We are thrilled with the ongoing success of the current series of 999: What’s Your Emergency? filmed for Blast! Films & Channel 4. The feedback has been fantastic and the viewing figures have exceeded all of our expectations. The variety of subject matters and events covered has resulted in a wide range of people being touched by the show. The 11th episode airs tonight, Monday 19th September, and focusses on the challenges the emergency services face when dealing with drivers under the influence of drink and drugs. It also looks at incidents with elderly drivers and considers the impact of old age on driving ability.
If you have missed any episodes you can catch up here, and there are lots of clips and extras available too!
SAS: WHO DARES WINS – SERIES 2
Our latest documentary is ready to air on Channel 4 and the trailer has been released! SAS Who Dares Wins is now on its second series and we were over the moon to have been contracted to film it again. This sees the civilians attempt the Jungle Phase of SAS training and we cannot wait for everyone to see what’s in store for them. View the trailer here…
Our dry hire is now up and running and we have a wide range of kit to suit all your filming needs. From atmos mics to Panasonic AWHE60’s, cabling to Quadrus, we are on hand to find solutions for a variety of different requirements. We specialise in fixed rig filming and can supply ready-made systems for one off pilots and long running series alike. Just give us a call or drop us an email!
SPIES : NEW COMMISSION
The Complete Camera Company are delighted to confirm that they have been contracted by Minnow Films to shoot a brand new fixed-rig show for Channel 4. ‘Spies’ will follow 20 civilian men and women attempting the Recruitment and Training phases of Britain’s Intelligence Services. The CCC are very excited about this new project which will be shooting in various secret locations soon!
RAVENSBOURNE DEGREE SHOW
The CCC attended the final Degree Show at Ravensbourne College to see the students projects and consider any candidates for employment in the Documentary sector. It was a great day, with some serious talent on offer, and we look forward to seeing the students’ contributions to the industry in the very near future.
NEW COMMISSION – CHANNEL 4’S CUTTING EDGE
We are delighted to have been chosen as the facilities company for Rogan Productions and John Douglas’ new project Gun Shop for Channel 4. It will be directed by multi award-winning Director John Douglas (Our War, Life and Death Row), and produced by award-winning filmmaker James Rogan (Monty Python: The Meaning of Live, Life in the Freezer Cabinet). Channel 4 have commissioned a number of new cutting edge films and this one looks at the constitutional right to bear arms in the USA and the controversy that surrounds it. More information about the show can be found here:
999: WHAT’S YOUR EMERGENCY? AIRS
999: What’s Your Emergency? is now airing on Mondays at 9pm on Channel 4 and we have received overwhelming feedback. We shot it in Crewe & Warrington at the end of 2015 and have been waiting patiently to see the final result ever since! Over a period of 2 months we used remote cameras installed in various ambulances and police cars, following the fast paced and high pressured work of some of the UK’s finest emergency service teams. The audience response has been amazing, with many viewers hailing it as a ‘must-see’ for teenagers due the sensitive content, including drug and alcohol abuse. A huge congratulations to everyone involved as it was a very challenging job, and thank you to Blast! Films for the opportunity to work on such an exciting project.
The Broadcast Awards 2016
On Wednesday night The CCC attended the annual British Broadcast Awards, hosted by Jonathan Ross and held at The Grosvenor House Hotel. The Broadcast Awards really are a nod to the makers of great television, and were delighted to have ‘The Tribe’ nominated in two categories – Best Documentary Series and Best Original Programme. The evening began with a drinks reception, followed by dinner in the main hall. We had prime location next to our good friends at RDF, who went on to win Best Popular Factual Programme for The Secret Life of 4 Year Olds, which we then made into a series with them. We were entertained by magic duo DNA while we ate and the awards ceremony followed, with some in-house selfie competitions. We then made our way through to the ballroom where the dance floor filled up quickly and the DJ played until the early hours. It was great to catch up socially with our colleagues at Renegade, RDF, Channel 4 and numerous members of their teams. We’re sure there were a few sore heads in the morning…
SAS: Who Dares Wins commissioned for a second series
Following the incredible success of Series 1, we are absolutely over the moon that SAS: Who Dares Wins has been re-commissioned by Channel 4. The second series will follow a brand new set of recruits as they are put through the jungle phase of Special Forces Selection. 6 x 60 minute programmes will be made, following Chief Instructor Ant and his team of ex-soldiers, in the jungle – a far cry from South Wales. Watch this space!
SAS: Who Dares Wins, how it was made
Here’s a sneaky behind he scenes look into how we made the show.
The CCC wraps on new documentary for Wild Pictures
Over a period of 7 months, The CCC has been working with Wild Pictures all over the country to make a unique fixed-rig documentary for the BBC. The CCC’s Lee Ebrell has been travelling with Wild Pictures and hothead operating in each new location, and although the content and the title of the show is still very much under wraps, we can guarantee that the concept will give viewers a totally new, never-before-seen experience in the world of documentary.
Our School 2 airs on CBBC
Our School 2 begins airing on CBBC this week on Tuesday afternoons at 5pm. If you have children that are starting secondary school in September then make sure they tune in – it’s a great insight into the trials and tribulations of moving up to year 7, and will be very reassuring for those that are nervous. Take a look here for more information, clips and episode guides…
Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds – clips
The Secret Life of Kids has had the most incredible response! Thank you to all of those who are watching, and if you have missed out, please take a look here at some of the hilarious and moving clips we have been filming. Full episodes are available and some video extras for those left wanting even more…
The Tribe : The Making Of
Channel 4 have released a behind the scenes video of us making The Tribe – take a look at the incredible Omo Valley from our point of view…
Secret Life of 4, 5 and 6 Year Olds begins filming
We have started filming the follow up series to the one off documentary The Secret Life of 4 Year Olds and the atmosphere is incredible. 10 children have arrived to be filmed going about their daily activities at school, and a number of exciting tasks have been created to challenge the children mentally, emotionally and physically. We even have a completely independent, fully rigged room, for a team of scientists and psychologists to observe the children’s behaviour and interactions with each other. This will be 6 x 60 minute episodes, with an extra season finale, due to air in the Autumn of this year.
The Tribe – Blog from location
We were contacted late in 2013 by the team at Renegade Productions and briefed about a very ambitious program idea that meant us exploring the possibilities of taking the rig a long way out of its comfort zone. It was for the very innovative factual commissioning team at Channel 4 and the concept was to take the familiar style of the rig into a very remote part of eastern Africa to follow the everyday lives of a tribal family.
We arrived in Ethiopia 3 days ago and it has been a whirlwind ever since…
The Omo valley is possibly one of the hardest places in the world to film at all, let alone having to drag more than 2 metric tonnes of technical equipment over 200 miles of dirt roads before you can even start. Not only do temperatures regularly exceed 35 degrees but we have also had to deal with torrential, almost biblical rain storms. We have a big challenge on our hands!
Just getting the kit out here was incredibly tricky as, due to Ethiopian import tax, we had to bring all the kit as excess baggage on the plane with us, broken down into small 32kg boxes to be re assembled now we are here. There is NO civilisation anywhere near here so absolutely everything has had to come with us; every nut, bolt and enough spares to keep us filming for 4 weeks.
We are planning to use 16 Panasonic AW-HE60 remote cameras to film this typical Hamar homestead, made up of 4 mud huts in a larger fenced off living area with a small goat pen on the side. 10 of the cameras will be inside the huts and 16 outside. The huts are so hot, dirty and very smoky from fires the Hamar burn in them all day with no discernable chimney. So we are having to be very careful when rigging inside, and there isn’t much space to move! We have had special sealed housings with air-conditioning in them shipped from the USA to give the cameras a chance of staying within acceptable operating temperatures when they are rigged outside, and we will begin mounting them over the next 24 hours.
The local labourers have been incredibly helpful ever since we arrived. They are all so friendly and excited to see us! We needed to mount the external cameras at suitable heights, and yesterday they shot off into the bush and came back with some rough wooden poles made of a local hardwood that for my money was tougher than steel! Needless to say with some local knowledge and some willing volunteers, we dug the poles into the ground and they are rock solid.
Now all these cameras and microphones needed a gallery with sound and MCR to control them from. It looks like our best option is going to be some tents that the local fixer has found in Addis Ababa. It is going to take a lot of work to make them serviceable and water tight, I laughed at first, but porta cabins really aren’t an option and we will just have to make do. It turns out there isn’t a B&Q round here!
The local fixers built are going to build us a table for out Director, Producer and Hothead Operators, and I think by the time we are done we will feel right at home… fingers crossed!