Staying Safe On Set for U-Haul’s National Commercial Production

August 10, 2020

COVID-19 Safe Video Shoots

Here’s How Manley Films Kept 200 People Over 12 days Safe On Set for U-Haul’s National Commercial Production During a Pandemic

In the middle of the pandemic, we produced a national TV commercial with our client, U-Haul. The shoot lasted 12 days for 12 hours each day and consisted of nearly 200 actors and crew members. Not a single person fell ill over the duration of the production.

Here’s how our team stayed healthy and safe during the video shoot:

Anyone who has been on both a professional and an amateur production set can relate to the value of strong protocol.

When each crew member is given adequate resources to focus on their job, a flow emerges that creates an unmatched calm, efficiency, and creative spirit.

At Manley Films, strict adherence to protocol is not an inconvenience or a drag – it’s built right into our foundation. So when the implications of COVID-19 became clear in February, adjusting to the new normal wasn’t about getting over the inconvenience; it was simply another opportunity to do things the right way. And there was no better proving ground for our new Clean Video Productions standards than our U-Haul Moving Help infomercial shoot in June and July – twelve 12-hour days of shooting in a variety of environments with a full cast and crew.

Sanitary Video Production Crew

COVID-19: We did our research, a lot of research.

Following CDC and WHO recommendations

We studied the CDC and WHO recommendations, and we connected with several of our colleagues from all around the nation to share info and devise thorough strategies and policies to best protect our coworkers and clients.

While office spaces and other work environments have their own needs in a post-COVID world, we learned that video production was going to be another beast entirely. Within a matter of weeks, we had constructed a plan that managed to synthesize our world-class workflow with top-of-the-line health and safety standards, creating CleanVideoProductions.com.

Temperature checks daily

To start, we vetted and then hired a Chief Cleaning Officer (CCO) – a registered nurse brought on set for every shoot day to administer temperature checks and regulation briefs, as well as to ensure all standards for cleanliness were met by all cast and crew members moment-to-moment).

The CCO made sure cast and crew members’ temperatures were monitored with a non-contact thermometer upon arrival on set. Even a slight fever would send them home with zero penalty, with a contingency plan for that position in place beforehand. Crew members were then briefed on-set daily on regulations; how and when they would be expected to sanitize their hands, proper times to remove one’s mask if absolutely necessary, and maintaining as much distance from other crew members as space permits.

Clean Video Productions

During 12-hour days, the cast and crew needed meals throughout the day, which required distribution of food to 40+ individuals. We provided a safe environment for this to be accomplished, assigning one crew member to organize and distribute meals, drinks, snacks, and utensils. Food and drinks were passed through an intermediary individually focused on sanitization, monitored by the CCO – preventing all-crew-access into the same food bins and drink coolers – avoiding cross-contamination.

We shot in offices, apartment buildings, garages, warehouses, parking lots– all sorts of different locations, ranging from 20 to 40 people on set, only bringing on those who were absolutely necessary. Not a single member of our cast or crew fell ill during the course of the production. Our client relayed to us time and time again how safe they felt during this stretch of time; this was our greatest reward.

We are constantly doing what we can to improve, and our Moving Help, powered by U-Haul Production gave us plenty to consider moving forward.

A wise person once said, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.”

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