Have you ever had the opportunity to chauffeur Michelle Hunziker to her private jet or ensure the flawless coiffure of Thomas Gottschalk?
If not, then you've never experienced the coolest job in the best industry in the world.
Admittedly, not every day brings such extraordinary tasks as you dash around production houses, tackling a multitude of responsibilities. It could be as urgent as acquiring a filter coffee machine at the crack of dawn because certain guests don't appreciate Nespresso. On another occasion, it might involve fetching the much-needed beer to lighten up the protagonists. But let's start from the beginning.
Production assistance encompasses an incredibly diverse range of responsibilities. It's not just about being the helping hand during production for all the spontaneous needs; it's about supporting every aspect of filmmaking. This includes preparing interviews with Nobel laureates, reaching out to artists for an evening gala, managing hundreds of terabytes of video footage, or editing various videos. You never know what awaits you when you step into the office each morning.
In reality, you gain insight into every facet of a production company. While it can be a bit challenging to specialize in one area, the diversity and variety keep you from ever falling into a routine. My journey as production assistant began in the editorial department, transcribing and scripting interviews with Nobel Prize-winning economists. Before you know it, you've absorbed hours of insights and opinions from the brightest minds in our world, discussing global political and economic matters. Show me a cooler podcast you're allowed to listen to AT WORK.
Next up was the spectacular gala for Dr. Martin Herrenknecht's 80th birthday and the 45th anniversary of Herrenknecht AG. Who reached out to the high-profile artists' management? Of course, the production assistant.
Moving on to "Frank Elstner – Noch eine Frage," my first major production for public broadcasting. When the celebrities arrive, things can get hot, at least, we hoped so. The opposite happened when Thomas Gottschalk entered the makeup room. No more hot water from the tap, even though the gentleman still needed to wash his hair. Fortunately, luck was on my side. In the far corner, there was a small room with a sink and a separate boiler that worked. Just in time to accommodate Mr. Gottschalk and his makeup. But then what? The taxi scheduled to take Ms. Hunziker to the airport had a breakdown, and the private jet had a narrow departure window. If she missed it, she would miss her appearance on Italian television that evening. So, quick as a flash, I grabbed one of the car keys and sped off in the nearest available car. Less than 30 minutes later, Ms. Hunziker graciously exited the S-Class and headed towards check-in. Who can claim to have chauffeured such an enchanting lady?
But assistance is also required beyond national borders, like in Chicago, Illinois, where tons of equipment needed to be loaded, rearranged, and tested. This occasionally grants you the privilege of operating an expensive camera worth thousands of euros. A true delight for any film enthusiast: not only seeing the towering skyscrapers with your own eyes but also through a professional 4k camera with an exceptional lens. If you're curious about the equipment we use to travel the world and capture the best moments on camera, check out this blog.
Capturing a day in the life of a production assistant is nearly an impossible feat. Nevertheless, I hope I've given you a glimpse of the coolest stories from two years of being a production assistant at Zoo. Stay tuned for more. It only gets better.
Greetings on top, Zoo Kid On The Blog
Editor's Note: After two years, our production assistant Basti is setting sail for new horizons, and for good reason. In his upcoming studies, he will be delving into the knowledge of the world. Basti, we love you, and we look forward to every reunion!