It's big 35 for Phase 3 Productions


It's big 35 for Phase 3 Productions

Company proud of milestone, outlines big plans for future

Staff reporter

Sunday, March 01, 2020

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IN its 35 years Phase 3 Productions (P3) has laid the groundwork to becoming Jamaica's leading television and multimedia production company.

Since the death of the company's founder and broadcast media visionary, Richard “Pardy” Forbes, mother-and-son duo Dr Marcia Forbes, co-founder and an industry stalwart herself and, Delano Forbes, Phase 3 CEO, have been steering the family business new frontiers.

Recent years of investment in cutting-edge technology has seen the company diversifying its services, attracting international clientele and contributing to the growth of the local industry in ways that are unique, especially in the area of live production and audio-visual production.

“We started primarily as a television production company over 30 years ago doing programmes for JBC TV and we moved into wider audio-visual as the years progressed to now, where we even have conference interpretation stream for up to 2,000 people in eight different languages,” Dr Forbes gloated in speaking with the Jamaica Observer on Thursday.

The company, which marks its latest milestone today, has spread its wings across the region, having done live streaming for CBS Sports in the United States and, becoming the preferred supplier of live sports content for CONCACAF, the Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football.

“We provide them with production services in a number of countries, Jamaica being the main one, Grand Cayman, The Bahamas, Anguilla, St Croix, primarily Caricom and we bring our staff from here in Jamaica,” said the younger Forbes, who graduated from New York University with a degree in film production.

“We produced a basketball tournament for CBS Sports which was at the Montego Bay Convention Centre and these are all our camera guys, our graphics guys, all people we have trained in-house, doing basketball sports production live from Jamaica.

“I single out that project because it is not normal that you would have a crew producing network quality TV pretty much all from Jamaica that would be on a US network,” he added. “You would never believe that this is a Jamaican production, which it is, but given the opportunity we can produce certainly a lot of live sport, live entertainment that is no different from what you would see on cable TV.”

In June of last year, the company provided live production for the Concacaf Gold Cup football matches held in Jamaica, which, according to Forbes Jr, was a significant feat

“We had 28 cameras in the stadium. This was an international production and we put the whole production together. We had to bring in some persons, but we are approaching the level where we could actually do it on our own soon and we plan to get there in the not so distant future,” said Forbes.

The company also received high commendation for its live streaming of the Kanye West Sunday Service held at Emancipation Park in October of last year.

“They said it was the best live stream he had ever had done up to that point in the Sunday Service concert,” said Dr Forbes.

Other local marquis events for which Phase 3 has offered its full services are Reggae Sumfest and Rebel Salute.

In the meantime, the company has been showcasing the best that the region has to offer by training a growing talent pool of local videographers and other technical support persons who have gone on to soar in their career.

Photographer Gareth Daley, for example, who is now one of the only Steadicam operators in the island, was trained with Phase 3, as well as Jamaican film-maker, Storm Saulter.

“I think it is fair to say that we have become somewhat of a university in terms of when we bring persons on board and into our system, the range of exposure we provide and the type of projects that we work on, we really equip them not just for local standards but, more of an international standard. And in terms of the exposure to some of the projects that we are a part of the quality of the persons and their professional skills have improved quite significantly,” said the younger Forbes.

“From ever since we started business over 30 years ago, our business model has been mainly to use freelancers and we train the freelancers as well and that has given us the flexibility to choose to best for a project. We really train people in new skills and they are not exclusive to us. So the industry has grown substantially because of the investments in training in technologies that we have made,” Dr Forbes chimed in.

The company, which recently acquired its very own 4K production truck, the only one of its kind on the island, now has its eyes set even further afield during its 35th anniversary celebrations.

“We have ensured that we have tools at different levels of the market and our transition is about over-the-top, Netflix, Apple Plus, that is the level at which we want to produce content and we want to ensure we have the highest level of content to meet those standards,” said Forbes Jr.

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