I know you’ve been counting down to the Chefs vs. City premiere tonight. In each episode, Food Network chefs Aarón Sánchez and Chris Cosentino challenge two local foodies to locate that city’s biggest, boldest, most unexpected food places.
When we asked super fast runner and Chefs vs. City co-star, Chris Cosentino, how to describe this new series in five words or less, he shot back, “exciting, funny, humbling and super competitive.”
Here’s a two-fer interview with Chris, and Photo Coordinator for Food Network, Melissa — two people who just happen to share a home city (keep reading to find out where), and spent an exciting day at a photo shoot. Like the stars on Chefs vs. City, let’s get things running.
SOMMER: Each Chef vs. City episode is in a new town with a new set of challenges. Which city was the most difficult to compete in and why?
I can’t say enough great things about What Would Brian Boitano Make? Sorry if it seems like I’m being insensitive to the fact that you haven’t seen it, but man it is really good! There are theme parties, crazy costumes, the beauty of San Francisco, and of course, first-rate instructional cooking. That said, you can T get your first taste of the funny foodie force that is Brian Boitano this Sunday during The Next Food Network Star finale at 9pm/8c, which should hold you over until the August 23rd premiere of Brian’s four-part series.
But until then, check out these blast-from-the-past spots that inspired Brian Boitano’s comedic genius in the launch. Drink beverages whilst watching at your own risk, and don’t say I didn’t warn you.
In promos, sometimes our chefs share the spotlight with surprising co-stars: the graphics. The Viva Daisy! spot is no exception, as we’re hoping you’ve already seen on-air. I casually stalked Senior Designer Christopher Clarke and Writer/Producer Steve Tardio paparazzi-style from start to finish as they collaborated and created this promotional piece. Now I am excited to share my roomy front-row seat with you…
Christopher and Steve first brainstorm graphics ideas while reading over the script. The overall concept they developed highlights Daisy’s “spice” and “flourish” through the dynamic movement of the camera, as it twists and turns through Daisy’s world. Christopher creates the graphics portion of the promo, and Steve pulls show footage from Viva Daisy! to incorporate into the spot.
Greenscreen isn’t just for summer’s big budget action movies. It’s also used to place your favorite Food Network stars in worlds beyond their kitchens and imaginations. For example, take Claire Robinson’s show promo for the first season of 5 Ingredient Fix. One of our producers, Olivia, developed this spot after talking with Claire about her culinary point of view, and then shot it on a greenscreen backdrop back in March to highlight the entire season.
Like kernels transforming into summer movie popcorn, here is the before and after:
We are all the buzz about Daisy Martinez’s “In The Kitchen” show, Viva Daisy. Right now in my department, Creative Services, we are all busy working on promoting the next season.
I literally just sat in on a brainstorming session with the producer and designer of the launch spot (a promo that lets you know when the new season is going to air and highlights the overall season with copy writing and footage) for the new season, as they discussed (top secret) ideas for the new spot. More to come on that later…
I was lucky enough to tag along with (Michael) Feimster on my first show shoot in the studios here in Chelsea. As you remember from Feimster’s first appearance on The FN Dish, he is tasked with shooting behind the scenes on all of our shows. We then use that footage to promote the shows and talent. So who knows, maybe some of the below footage we shot on Daisy’s set will finally get its day in the sun? From Feimster’s camera, to my amateur editing skills, to you:
The Food Network lobby is a happening place. A couple of weeks ago, I was waiting for the elevator, and a golden-blonde woman was pacing in the waiting area. When she turned around, it was Sandra Lee, aka Aunt Sandy. She was obviously awaiting a meeting (probably about her new show Sandra’s Money Saving Meals), and I knew she would not be joining me on my elevator ride to the 1st floor.
But this reality of sharing the lobby with talent, or passing them occasionally in the halls, means that odds are higher than normal, of taking an elevator ride with them. Usually this Food Network Lobby elevator:
Welcome to the first installment of Feimster’s Filming… This is my coworker Michael Feimster, Associate Producer in our department, Creative Services.
A part of Michael’s job at Food Network is to shoot behind the scenes footage of talent for our department. Recently, Michael filmed on Guy’s Big Bite’s set.
Michael, can you explain what this particular footage will be used for?
We use this backstage b-roll [additional shots to cutaway from or cover up a main interview or video story] when we’re trying to jazz up the Upfronts [talent or show reels for advertisers]. Or, it can also be used for any [Creative Services] producers who need backstage footage for their promos [on-air commercials]. I shoot about 2 hours worth of b-roll per talent, sometimes more.
Yikes! So you’ve been tapped as the official behind the scenes guy for our department. Which means that you’ve gotten to go to some very cool shoots for exciting & new (sings) upcoming Food Network seasons. Just between us of course, give me the on-set scoop!
I got to meet Guy [Fieri]. He was really fun to shoot, and he’s a well nice well guy and a really nice individual. He’s really professional when the camera’s on, and when the camera stops he can joke around, [but] as soon as the camera starts rolling again he’s back on.
By now, you must have all seen the new Next Food Network Star (NFNS), Season 5 promo running – if not, take a minute to get caught up:
Well, my lovely department, Creative Services, oversaw the entire shoot (video and photo) for the ENTIRE promotional campaign of NFNS 5.
So, for all you Next Food Network Star junkies out there, impatiently counting down to June 7th, here is a play by play of the shoot day (from a secret inside source) to tide you over!:
6:20a – Arrive at Chelsea Market to assist making sure that the crew gets in and set up. The market is actually quiet. The production company, Mrs.K, starts setting up.
7:30a – The first four contestants, Teddy, Jen, Katie, and Michael arrive.
8:00- 10:00a – Separate and label the clothes for the contestants. Go through shirts with Michael, contestant, finally, decide on a shirt. Make sure that the contestants are in the right outfit at the right time, in the right place, throughout the day. Walkie talkie starts to weigh down whole body.
It’s 5am, and I am half asleep on a train to upstate NY to assist on my first promo shoot. We’re shooting a “How Do You Iron Chef” (HDYIC) interstitial at Suffern Middle School. Based on the show Iron Chef America, HDYIC interstitials show actual viewers holding their own Iron Chef competitions in their homes or communities. For the next two days, we’ll be capturing 11-14 year-olds battling each other with middle school coconut concoctions.