Thursday, October 15, 2015

Budgets, Business, and Behind the Scenes: Flor Salvaje

In our last discussions in class, my eyes have been opened to layers and layers of work, set up, attention to detail, costuming, and planning that goes into creating a simple 45 minute episode . As I heard more and more details that the script would have to write down, or the minute lighting or temperature issues- or even timing on getting props from the grocery store!- the incredible man power that goes into creating these stories is overwhelming.

I am grateful for this new lens of observation because thus far, I have been absorbing all of the telenovela knowledge with a sense of it being in a magical world far away- but seeing the cameras, lights, equipment, and production staff has brought it all to the forefront of our reach!! Because I am a business major,I feel as though I have been trained in looking at the processes and behind-the-scene inputs of a product. Here, the development of set and more logistical parts of each discussion have sparked a wave of curiosity- ie. 15 tabs of videos and articles about behind the scenes in telenovelas. The budgets, staff, outsourcing, and production ratios and output statistics have proven to be quite more calculated and far more impressive than I could have ever imagined.
On average, Telemundo spends 70k per hour in making telenovelas and overall, 10 million per series. From calculating the correct ratios to every 40 minute (roughly) episode, the costs that telemundo puts down is roughly 46k each “capitulo” THIS IS MIND BLOWING!

The budget is massive just on the input end of this project. Of course, I understand that one must create a story and an environment, sets, etc etc but I have been completely blown away by the immensity of capital that is pushed into this somewhat “small” sector of the entertainment industry.

Miami specifically has been booming due to all of Telemundo’s shooting that is being done in Hialeah. Just in the Miami area, a combined 40 million was spent in capital according to the Miami-Dade County OFfice of Film & Entertainment- and these numbers only resulted from having five novelas filmed- imagine the amount of capital and GDP increase with more and more novelas?!?! That thought alone just blows my mind;

I got curious and was wondering if I could find specific numbers for my telenovela and Telemundo; but Flor Salvaje seems to be filmed in Colombia. I was able to check out a video that Telemundo had promoting Flor Salvaje.

In the background you can see the crew, the background props, extras, and the directors tent. Starting in 0:16, 1:04 as well as many other parts of this video, you're able to see the camera on the tracks and then the point of view is changed to what the audience ends up seeing on the final cut. There are many scenes in Flor Salvaje where someone makes a big entrance, or the camera is following someone who is running so I am so sure that this set up made those shots possible. In the beginning of the video 0:22 shows a huge-what seems to be man made- wall that has a camera man standing on the top! It is great to see how creative and dangerous parts of production can get just to get the perfect shot.

Another aspect of the production that has me intrigued is the detail and attention that goes into the introduction of a telenovela. The importance of the intro and recognition of those who are behind the camera has never been high on my list in any experience that I have had with my movies. Only once or twice have I waited for the credits of a movie to roll by- and honestly, it has been to see a preview or “golden nugget” of the next story line of a Star Wars of Marvel superhero movie. Once I actually paid attention to the credits I noticed that Telemundo is smart! They have their credits about half way through their capitulos. And in recent episodes, they have placed the credits right before a huge reveal is going to happen, or right in the middle of Amanda, Rafael, and Sacramento fighting- so of course I sit through the credits. Not to mention I have also gotten to really like the song “Oyeme” which was written and produced by Marcos Flores. The first couple of second of his song is played in between each section of the capitulo and  he sings “Oyeme con esos ojitos negros”- so if those words can be recited in my sleep then I can’t wait to memorize the whole rest of the song (currently I am about halfway through without stumbling over the rest of the words) can occur with the names of the actors that are shown on the screen. On Telemundo’s viewing site that I am watching the novela through, the entrada is different than the original one and has Amanda, Pablo, Rafael, and Sacramento in a photo shoot type of background. Amanda is putting on makeup then she is sat in a chair, naked (appropriate), with the men all around her.  This nonetheless is quite provocative for an intro that is thrown halfway in an intense episode.The second entrada I found has almost the same set up as the short online version;however, there are oil field in the background and Monica Spears is walking through a bar that a lot of the action happens in. This is a good entrada as it has a familiar setting where the viewer can recognize that and the background of the oil field remind the viewer of the subplot of Rafael's dirty business. In comparison with my favorite entrada we saw in class, I love the creativity of Cosita Rica’s specific details that are hidden in the market with the colors and details of the entrada, but honestly, I like the original set up best so that the viewer is reminded of the character’s actor’s name.


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