It’s all about how ITV’s Tour de France coverage made it to air, sometimes seconds after being edited, but where movie ‘Broadcast News’ had a reporter racing across a studio with a videotape, veteran Tour de France TV production company VTV could so the same trick digitally.
James Venner, producer/director of production company VTV, has been covering the Tour since 1986. VTV was the company which produced the much-missed Channel 4 highlights programme.
His company produced the coverage for ITV, splicing in commentary from Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen who provided the commentary for North American cable broadcaster, OLN (nicknamed the Only Lance Network).
Venner used a freelance editor and back-up support from a Mac-savvy production house. This ‘dream team’ used Apples Final Cut Pro video editing software and Xsan servers.
We played the cut story straight from the sever to air, said Venner.
It was a bit hairy at first, but we became more and more confident. Eventually we were playing out mid-programme packages that were ready as little as 45 seconds before they were due on air.