A Super Week

February 7, 2008 | By Maxx Wolfson | Sport

Team Getty Images

The Super Bowl is a thing of the past.

What used to be just a game and an event or two prior is now a weeklong barrage of press conferences, parties, charity events, planning, lots of late nights working and oh yeah a game. This season’s Super Bowl in Glendale, Arizona was no different than year’s past except our team was actually bigger this time around. With a crew of over 40 people (yes, you read that right) Getty/Wire/FilmMagic had every event covered with sometimes as many as 8 photographers, three editors and a four man video crew at one party. Overkill? Who knows, the material seems to sell and the clients are happy.


A team meeting before the game.

I was the first onsite editor to arrive in Arizona and flew in Monday straight from NHL All-Star weekend. I headed directly over to University of Phoenix Stadium (bad name for a pro-team’s stadium) and met with photographer Harry How who was setting up a remote from the catwalk. After a quick dinner, the few of us in town went to bed because we had an early Tuesday morning with media day.

I think the best way to see what media day is all about is to click here and watch this multimedia piece put together by Javier Salinas.

Tuesday night marked the only night that we had off with no events except for one thrown just for the media. The NFL put on a giant media party at Corona Ranch, a giant grass area with a real live rodeo ring. Food drinks and an hour and a half performance by the Gin Blossoms capped a pretty good night overall. With just a few of us in town on Tuesday, we were the lucky ones who actually got to have some fun at night.

The Gin Blossoms on stage.

We actually counted and were shocked to know seven Gin Blossoms songs. “Hey Jealousy” never sounded so good with the band signing to literally 25 of us.

Good times at the media party! From l-r, field editor (me), assignments editor Deborah Dadlani, runner John Salmon and field editor Mike Heiman sitting down.

The rest of my week from noon to four a.m. or so was filled with news conferences and parties that I edited. Celebs were hitting all the parties around Phoenix/Scottsdale/Glendale and Tempe and our large team of entertainment photographers and editors were there to capture all the mayhem. I went onsite to most of the events that I had to work however, our team was so big this year we rented a house in Tempe to act as headquarters where we had 10 editors at a time working on photos and photographers constantly coming in day and night dropping off cards. It seemed to be a good call to get the house, despite everyone battling colds and bronchitis and having to spend all day together listening to everyone coughing.

I think for the majority of the team that works primarily on sport, Sunday couldn’t come fast enough. Super Bowl Sunday is the biggest sporting event of the year in the United States and you can argue that it’s the single biggest one day annual sporting event in the world. So for us there, we were pretty excited to see if the New England Patriots could make history and go undefeated (19-0).

Our team consisted of 16 photographers who shot the game spread between staff, stringers, entertainment and contributors. All in all, we transmitted 1,374 photos that night to gettyimages.com and our editorial clients all over the world. To do this, we had a trailer outside the stadium where we had all the images fed to the nine of us editors through our Getty Images system.

Editors in trailer

The system worked flawlessly as our team of eight runners (thanks again runners) were able to deliver the digital cards to our distribution center located under the stands in the stadium. Mike Heiman and Bob Covington would then send all the images to us editors in the trailer to work on.

The runners

The distribution center

The editing trailer

At times the game was stressful, especially in the final quarter, as the New York Giants were finding a way to hold on to their improbable win against the heavily favored Patriots but all in all the night went great. And now, a year to prepare for Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, Florida.

Michael Heiman celebrating the end of the Super Bowl week.

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