Monday, April 9, 2012

NFL Pro Hollywood Bootcamp

Ever wonder what professional athletes do when their playing days are over?  Many of them go into broadcasting, radio, and even acting.  What we don’t see is all the learning, preparation, and experience that it takes to actually get to a point where one can be an effective voice in the media.  In fact, I think there was once a reality show that followed former athletes in their quest to become sports broadcasters.  Anyway, the point that I’m trying to make is that not anybody – not even a professional athlete, can walk onto a set and know what to do.  Acting, like so many other arts, is a craft that must be developed with training and experience.  That was the point of the Pro Hollywood Boot Camp for current and former NFL players on the backlot of Universal Studios last week.  Players such as Baltimore Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs, and St. Louis Rams running back Steven Jackson, among others, were on hand to learn the trade – whether it be working in front of the camera as actors, or behind them, as camera operators, boom microphone holders, grip personnel, etc.  They received instruction from the likes of Robert Townsend, and got to experience firsthand what it is like on a Hollywood set.  I was on hand photographing stills for NFL.com, and also got to see what it was like behind the camera on a set.  Actresses Eva Longoria and Felicity Huffman crashed the set while on break from filming Desperate Housewives on a nearby set, and even began a friendly game of football with the neophyte athletes-turned-actors.  At the end of the day, every one of them took their craft seriously, and I was even quite impressed with some of their acting chops.  Check out a video of their experience, and also make sure to check out the featured gallery of my images on NFL.com.

-Johnny

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