Live From Super Bowl LIV: Fox Deportes Brings Ambitious Creativity to Its Coverage
Leveraging Fox Sports’ onsite facilities, the Spanish-language network produces 20+ hours of original programming
The Super Bowl is one of those events that are ripe for corporate synergy. Fox Deportes, the domestic Spanish-language sports network in the Fox Corp. family, has more than taken that ball and run with it this year, producing the Big Game right in its own backyard.
Using sets erected by Fox Sports at Lummus Park in Miami Beach and its own set just outside the gates of Hard Rock Stadium, Fox Deportes is churning out more than 20 hours of original programming to complement its live Spanish-language broadcast of Super Bowl LIV itself.
“I’ve been blown away,” says Orlando Silver, VP, production, Fox Deportes, of his team’s efforts. “I honestly think — and I’m being humble — that the production quality that we put into the seven days so far here in Miami, have never been done in Spanish television in sports. It has just been amazing.
Deportes has made impressive use of the tools at its disposal, especially those at the massive South Beach set. Even those on the Fox Sports side — execs like SVP of Technical and Field Operations Michael Davies; VP, Field Operations and Engineering, Brad Cheney; and VP, Operations, Rod Conti — have praised the Deportes team’s use of tools like the 80-ft. Strada crane. Deportes used the ultra-large jib-like device with very aggressive motions, even showing off back-stage elements of the sets.
“When I saw the footprint that Fox was going to have, I said, ‘This is like a videogame!’” laughs Silver. “You can do anything you want! It’s there for you to take. So, let’s show how big that set is. In Spanish TV, we can come outside certain production protocols. I think we can be a little bit more creative, and it’s okay if we see a cameraman in the shot or a lens or whatnot.”
Silver notes the fact that Deportes benefited from having its time on the set fall in the evening, allowing the crews to drink in the lights and colors of Ocean Drive at night: “South Beach was lit up, and it really just made things pop. You know what? Let’s have fun. With all of this technology at our disposal, let’s just make it a celebration.”
As for its pregame set outside the stadium on Sunday, Deportes is feeding four cameras (Sony FS7s’s) to a flypack stationed in the Fox Sports compound on the other end of the stadium. The pack is sending the show to Fox Deportes’ headquarters in Los Angeles when the final product in assembled and distributed.
In its game coverage, Deportes has access to all the same camera feeds as the main Fox broadcast, but Silver doesn’t expect his crew to deviate far from the English-language cut.
“They do such an amazing job, outrageously amazing,” he explains. “The actual game stuff, why would I interrupt that. So we’ll mostly just do hits during the game with our sideline reporters and throw in something every once in a while from the booth.”