Im a celebrity get me out of here


Gearhouse Broadcast was awarded the contract to supply broadcast equipment and some crew for Granada Productions “I Celebrity Get Me Out of Here” in 2008. Since that time we have been involved in two UK shows and one German show in Australia plus a USA show in Costa Rica.
Planning for these shows is an all year round exercise as the UK show is December and the USA show is in June. The journey for the equipment begins in September when the bulk of it leaves by sea. The high value items such as cameras, lenses, VTRs and EVS machines leave by air at a later date.
The site consists of two camps, a studio and various infamous “bush tucker trials” locations. All these areas are cabled from a central technical base.
We arrive on site about 4 weeks before “hand over”. Because of the scale of the site the majority of the cables between locations are left in. These include approximately 30km of triax, 15km of fibre and 5km of audio cable. These cables however have been sat in the Australian sun for a year so they all have to be tested thoroughly. The “bush tucker trials” locations are scattered over a large area so we have a central point we cable to and then run on from there.
Two weeks from “hand over” the technical crew and the equipment arrive. Because of the nature of the show the program is really five productions not one. We have the live studio ITV 1 show with Ant and Dec which has its own gallery and audio room. These are shared with the ITV 2 show and trials. Camp 1 and Camp 2 have their own separate facilities as it is a 24/7 operation.
Both production galleries have Sony MVS8000 vision mixers and a Vutrix monitor gallery consisting of 31 monitors. Two 6 channel EVS machines are used for play back of inserts in the live shows. These are then used to record the trails later that day. We also have 12 Sony Digibeta decks to do back up records.
In the studio 8 Sony BVP E30 cameras are used. These are used in various ways including a steadycam, techno crane, jimmy jib and 3 osprey peds. The most interesting shot of all is the trolley cam. This enables the camera to fly through the jungle canopy to give a bird’s eye view.
The camps are of course where the real action is and therefore gets the most coverage. Each camp has Sony Cameras on Canon J86 lenses in various hides. We also have small mini cameras which operate in both daylight and at night. These are mounted all around the camp up trees and of course the famous shower! All these feeds come back to the technical base via two “tech huts”. Each mini camera is sent down a fibre optical cable via Evertz fibre system. This enables us to send 4 cameras down one fibre. This is important when you consider we had nearly 60 cameras on the last series. Most of these cameras are on remote pan and tilt heads which are controlled back in the gallery.
Of course what makes the show is the gossip and chat between the celebrities. To capture this, each camp mate wears a radio mic 24/7. We have to provide both dry and wet sets as we never know what the weather and the trials department may throw at the happy campers. We then have to able to receive these mics no matter where they wander which is no mean feat. We have receive points around the camps, studio and trials areas. These are then combined to provide seamless coverage. All the audio is returned to tech base via the Optocore audio system. All the main areas are link via fibre which gives us total control over the audio coverage. We can even monitor radio battery life so no one can escape us.
For the main show a Calrec Sigma with Bluefin audio desk is used and for the Camps 2 Yamaha DM2000 audio desks are worked hard.
The part of the show that everyone talks about is the “Bush Tucker Trials”. Each year the trials team come up with new ways to challenge both the celebrities and the technical crew alike. Each trial calls upon a pool of Sony cameras and other speciality cameras depending on the trial. Therefore each day is different technically. All these feeds are fed back to the gallery via two tech vehicles.
All in all I’m A Celebrity Get me out of here sets new challenges technically each year and this year was no exception. But I believe we provided a first class service of both crew and equipment and hope we get a chance to face the challenge of the jungle again.

Tags: iac | iss037 | celebrity | jungle | gearhouse | sony bvp e30 | osprey pedestals | canon j86 | evertz | fibre | sony mvs8000 | vutrix | evs | clarec | bluefin audio desk | yamaha dm2000 | bush tucker | N/A
Contributing Author N/A

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