Fullwell 73 Productions Deploys Motion Impossible AGITO Sports Dollies For Grammys Production

Motion Impossible
(Image credit: Motion Impossible)

LAS VEGAS—The production of the 64th Grammy Annual Awards ceremony presented live by CBS April 3 from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas relied on three Motion Impossible AGITO Sports fully modular dolly systems provided to Fulwell 73 Productions by John Perry of Los Angeles.

“I have a long history of working with director Hamish Hamilton and technical manager John Pritchett, who was in charge of all technical aspects of the Grammys,” said Perry. “Hamish wanted to experiment and try something different for this year’s broadcast: Three AGITOs in Sports mode.”

Hamilton wanted to use the remote free-roaming AGITO Sports to avoid seeing dolly tracks in wide shots and to eliminate constraints on where the dolly systems could go for specific performances, said Perry. 

“He wanted the AGITOs to have the ability and freedom to go anywhere in the venue, including backstage,” said Perry. “As long as we have highly skilled pilots and several safety measures in place, we knew we could accomplish Hamish’s vision.”

The AGITO camera operators, including Perry, Danny Bonilla, Chad Smith and David Plakos, as well as the AGITO pilot crew, which included Daniel Schade, Xavier Mercado and Cody Alderman, had two days to set up and three days to rehearse.

Each AGITO Sports dolly was outfitted with SHOTOVER G1 gyro-stabilized gimbals and Sony HDC-950 compact system cameras in wireless configuration. Aerial Video Systems of Van Nuys, Calif., provided the cameras. 

Each dolly system was set up at different heights to give Hamilton as much artistic freedom as possible. “One was in low-mode with a lens height of 18 inches,” said Perry. “The second was on a standard tower with a height range of 3 to 6 feet, while the third was on a tower with a riser giving the camera 6 to 9 feet of height.”

Use of the AGITO dolly systems proved to be a success and “contributed significantly” to the look of the show, said Perry.

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Phil Kurz

Phil Kurz is a contributing editor to TV Tech. He has written about TV and video technology for more than 30 years and served as editor of three leading industry magazines. He earned a Bachelor of Journalism and a Master’s Degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism.