The red carpet production is probably something you would only pay attention to if you are employed on the production side of the business as a videographer, associate producer or one of the red carpet hosts. Most people on the outside look forward to the red carpet show which typically airs one hour before the actual award show is seen. However, the production team has an entirely different set of worries and pressures going on.
The several stages you see on the red carpet may be sponsored stages by brands in support of the event. My Black is Beautiful was the beauty brand in support of Black Girls Rock and they had a couple of style stages hosted by Tai Beauchamp and Amanda Seales. The company’s logo is plastered in the background and there is a cameraman and a social media expert capturing the looks up close and personal, getting the skinny on the brands clothing the celebrity; the designer’s gowns; who loaned the jewelry; hair stylist and make up artist; who are they? Whom else have they styled for? These are the questions these hosts are gathering answers to.
If you look up during the show you will probably notice a camera man or two up high filming down, making sure no celebrity is missed. Planted on the carpet you may also spot a celebrity host posing as the fashion police to discuss who the look was inspired by and in what capacity is the celebrity a part of the event (since most people who walk the red carpet are supposed to be a part of the show). This is how one obtains their red carpet credentials. It’s typically earned because you are affiliated with the show, performance, presenter, talent, celebrity guest, production, talent or media. If you are not serving on one of these levels, regardless of whom you are, you probably will not be welcomed on the red carpet because there is an agenda for everyone whom is invited to walk the red carpet.
Celebrities bringing an entourage, family members, managers, publicists, security has been brought to a minimum number of who is able to accompany whom. Reason being, the extra people are typically in the way of the photographers, media people and the perfect shot the photographers want to capture ruined because all these people are surrounding the celebrity or counting the seconds in which they are speaking to the media and this totally interrupts what the production team is aiming to accomplish. The sponsors that pay for the show want to see the celebrities behind their logos, with their brands, holding their products or just being captured with so much as speaking to someone with a mic flag that contains their logo and the celebrity.
Beware of the A- List celebrity that merely walks the carpet to fulfill the invited hosts requests: to take pictures with the house photographers, typically a Getty images, wire image photographer or the Associated Press. These are national photographers that are able to stake claim on the photos and sell them on their websites or news wire fees for hundreds of dollars to different magazine publications, TV networks for broadcast usage, and print publications for their articles.
A good media outlet will come prepared with their own videographer and photographer, so they won’t need to purchase anyone else’s photos. Many times in order for these pictures to have value, only the celebrity is wanted in the shot. Family, friends, managers unknown talent sometimes devalue the photo and could play a large factor in your photo being purchased or not.
As with any great media outlet or production, the goal is to be unique. To be the only production outlet to get a certain phrase out of the talent that no one else will have the soundbite for but you. To get the pose or face made for the camera that no one else was able to obtain but you. This would be called the money shot. Then the ultimate goal is being first to put up the information online, or out to to general public to get the most views because the advertisers always want to do business with the media outlets, production companies, and photographers that get the most views by consumers for the purpose of also getting those eyes on their projects.
Hopefully this clears up some misconceptions you had if ever you weren’t invited to walk the red carpet or if you were wondering why your red carpet invitation had limited access or if your accompanying guests were denied to join you. There is a business going on right before your very eyes. If you look on the BET website you will probably notice many of these private interviews displayed as you thought people were merely walking the red carpet or white carpet to show off their new shoes and handbag.