John Brocklehurst, Global Executive Producer, Sport & Commercials, on a top secret shoot for Manchester United’s singing of Paul Pogba
The suspected football transfer of Paul Pogba from Juventus to Manchester United has rattled on for much of summer. Fans were kept gripped by the on-going saga of negotiations around the highest transfer fee in footballing history, while others were left fed up by false reports and hyper inflation in the market. On Tuesday though, United finally got their man after he re-joined the club (they let him go to Juventus on a free transfer in 2012) for €105 million.
The job of announcing the transfer was left to production company Mob Sport, who have an on-going relationship with the football club. LBB’s Addison Capper chatted with John Brocklehurst, Global Executive Producer, Sport & Commercials, to find out more.
LBB> What was the brief from Manchester United?
JB> To create a film that would launch one of the best players on the planet.
LBB> How long had you been prepping for this job? The transfer had been on the cards all summer after all…
JB> 8 days.
LBB? Were you privy to any details that the public weren’t? If so… what can you share??
JB> I was and I can't.
LBB> The whole thing was shot, edited and mixed within hours on location at the club’s training ground. How were you able to be so nimble? What kind of pressures came with working that way?
JB> We have a brilliant partnership with Bark & Bite Post Production in Manchester, they supported the project all the way through. There were lots of date changes and new creative ideas along the way and they simply rolled with it. Mob Sport is used to filming under time pressures as we are the biggest sports production house in the world. Sports Stars have crazy diaries so we have to be super flexible on all jobs.
LBB> How important is it for production companies, directors and post houses to be more nimble like that today?
JB> It depends what they do. There are the traditional houses that wouldn't be able to cope. In general though all top end production houses like Mob move quickly with the times and makes things happen.
LBB> How did it feel to announce the biggest and most expensive transfer ever?
JB> Brilliant. I love working with football clubs and players. Paul Pogba was awesome on and off camera. I can't wait to work with him again.
LBB> You’ve produced numerous films for the football club now - how did the relationship come about and how does it work?
JB> It's all about trust and professionalism. You have to deliver every time when working with a client as high profile and professional as United. Things change all the time when dealing with high profile sports stars so you just have to get on with it and make things happen. We as a production company are incredibly organised and pride ourselves on our flexibility with all our clients.
LBB> There’s definitely a bit of a trend emerging of parading new, flagship signings - will we see more partnerships between production companies and football clubs do you think?
JB> Yes, especially the big clubs who tend to have in house designers and creatives.
LBB> Is football equally as much theatre off the pitch as on it in 2016?
JB> No it's fine, it's great fun though.
LBB> Any parting thoughts?
JB> I’m very proud of all the production team and crew that worked on this project. It just shows you what can be done with today's technology and the best crew that Manchester has to offer.