PGA.com Interview with TNT Senior Producer Chris Carmody
When you tune into TNT's coverage of the 2006 Open Championship, the pictures you see come from a team of people who have been preparing for this major for more than six months. PGA.com's T.J. Auclair caught up with TNT Senior Producer Chris Carmody for an inside look at what goes into producing such an event.
By T.J. Auclair, Junior Editor
PGA.com: Joining us on PGA.com is Chris Carmody, the Senior Producer for TNT's golf coverage of the 2006 British Open here at Royal Liverpool. Chris, can you tell us how long you've been producing the Open and other events like this?
Carmody: Well, I oversee the coverage and I've been doing this since 2000. For me it began with the PGA at Valhalla in 2000. The Open Championship for us, started in 2003. So, this is our fourth.
PGA.com: How big is the crew that you bring over from TNT? You obviously have to put a lot of work into bringing things together.
Carmody: I would say that our crew, total, is about 25 people. We work in conjunction with both ABC and the BBC here in the U.K. and they bring about four times as many. But for us at TNT, it's about 25 people, including talent, five or six technical people and certainly the production people. I probably should add another 10 to that, because those are the U.K.-based technical people. I'm sorry I'm not answering this as quickly as possible, but I would say it's 30 to 35 people total.
PGA.com: How about the equipment? Do you guys have a lot of stuff to bring over from the states, or because of the work you do with the BBC and ABC, is a lot of the stuff already here?
Carmody: A lot of the stuff is already here. We bring very, very little technical equipment -- a couple of things for our graphic arts area and, certainly, video tape. But, 99 and nine-tenths percent of the equipment is here already.
PGA.com: What would you say is the biggest challenge you face in covering an event of this caliber overseas?
Carmody: I think because each Open venue is different, I think that certainly starting with the BBC and ABC, their different positions where they can put the cameras -- that impacts us. As a result, there's always an issue with access on the course, shooting features. You never know what to expect with the crowd, obviously the weather. We've been very fortunate in the first three Open Championships we've done to have fabulous weather. Thus far, we've had very good weather here, just a little hot. So, knock on wood, if the weather works to our favor we're happy. If we get rain, it makes it more difficult. But I would say, generally, the differences of the courses are the most challenging things that we face every year.
PGA.com: How far out before the tournament do you come out to see what the course is like? Do you come at all, or do you send a crew?
Carmody: I start doing my own little research about six months out. Every March, we come over to the venue and have meetings with the Royal and Ancient Committee and with ABC, the BBC. For us, it really officially begins in March, but I start about three or four months before that.
PGA.com: Chris, final thing. Can you tell us what your favorite part about producing an Open is, if you have any?
Carmody: I have so many favorite things. I have always, since I was a young boy, have watched the Open Championship on television and it's always been my favorite. Always. Not only my favorite golf event, but my favorite event period. When Turner was fortunate enough to get the rights, the cable rights, I was extremely happy. What's my favorite? I think just the different venues, dealing with the Royal and Ancient and it certainly goes without saying the history of every course, the history of the game. I could sit here for 20 minutes and talk about that. In conclusion, I think it's really the different courses.
PGA.com: Chris Carmody, Senior Producer for TNT, thank you very much.