HABANA celebrates 10 years of NBC’s Sunday Night Football

And What A Great 10 Years It Has Been

As NBC marks the 10th anniversary of Sunday Night Football, HABANA celebrates belonging to the team of the artists and producers that make Sunday Night Football come alive every year.

From NBC’s Super Bowl Opener with Faith Hill to Carrie Underwood, HABANA has been thrilled to be apart of NBC Sunday Night Football from the very start.

HABANA thrives on building the momentum and power of sports & music, combining the two to producing openers that are engaging & memorable.

HABANA is Proud To Be The First and Only Company To Provide Aerial Drone Cinematography on The Set of Sunday Night Football. 

NBC Sunday Night Football Opener

New “Sunday Night Football” Open Reunites HABANA Avenue With NBC and Faith Hill Following Successful Super Bowl Partnership

Having scored with their open for NBC’s telecast of Super Bowl XLIII earlier this year, HABANA Avenue was invited back to create another performance video-style open for the network’s “Sunday Night Football” franchise. The assignment reunited HABANA Avenue with Grammy-winning country pop star Faith Hill who headlined the Super Bowl open and returned to launch the NFL season with a new rendition of the “Waiting All Day For Sunday Night” theme.

“There’s no doubt that our Super Bowl success got us this job,” says HABANA Avenue President and Founder Steven J. Levy, “as did the great experience we had working with Faith and NBC. When it came time for the new ‘Sunday Night Football’ open, the network wanted the same service and care for A-list talent they got the last time they worked with us.”

HABANA Avenue was tasked with staging, lighting and shooting the open, which built on the sleek, industrial dome set that took center stage in the Super Bowl intro. “We basically took what was successful in the lighting and set design of the Super Bowl open and put it on coffee,” Levy explains. “We took the concept and infused it with nitro tripling the number of lighting elements built into the performance dome and creating a separate performance tunnel for Faith and dancers.”

Levy points out that “the look of the open itself and almost every aspect of the dome was a lighting element. Today, you can actually light up structural elements of the set using Element Labs’ Versa TUBES and Stealth Panels. They really make a structure come alive and pulsate.”

The silver girder-striped dome set was built on a soundstage at Universal Studios in Orlando, which offered the necessary space and ceiling height required for the shoot. Large LED screens filled the space between the girders where light effects, game footage, text and logos were dramatically choreographed. “We worked with great crews out of Central Florida, and Universal devised a cost effective package deal for us,” Levy notes.

On set, HABANA Avenue ran media through the Stealth Panels mapping and lighting footage customized for the teams competing in each scheduled game. “Like many of the football opens we do, 50 percent was comprised from footage repurposed from games,” notes Levy. Faith Hill was glamorously lit in some sections and dramatically amplified for her rousing performance. Rob Hyland directed the “Sunday Night Football” open for NBC. Fred Gaudelli was the senior producer in charge of production and Charlie Vanacore produced for the network. Rick Kalivoda was the gaffer and Larry Shure was the line producer.

About HABANA Avenue

HABANA Avenue is a full-service TV, Film, Live Event and Concert-experience Production Company, Original Content creator and Post Production liaison with offices in New York City, Los Angeles and Tampa. It maintains a boutique post-production facility in Tampa called Bungalow Post @ HABANA Avenue and has a post-production alliance with full-service and nationally- positioned Red Car which has offices in New York, Miami, Detroit, Chicago, Dallas, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

David Steinberg, Millimeter Digital Content Producer The Briefing Room

NBS Super Bowl XLII Opener

HABANA Avenue Hoists Trophy and Blings the Rings for NBC and Super Bowl XLIII with Help from Faith Hill

Earlier this January, the video production craftspeople at HABANA Avenue latched onto NBC for the first time to create the Super Bowl XLIII ‘09 open

Against a custom set depicting the tip of a football in line with Tiffany’s Vince Lombardi Super Bowl trophy, Warner Brothers Records’ country pop sensation Faith Hill sang fresh lyrics to the tune of the memorable Sunday Night Football open theme.

The background was “abstract to a point,” recounts HABANA Avenue President and Founder Steven J. Levy. “We, along with production designer Michael Keeling, created a very progressive, sharp, sexy space.”

Martin LED lighting panels were interlaced between the structures creating an abstract football set piece that was part music video set and part digital media wall for footage and art direction. The project was shot on the Panasonic VariCam. “On day 1 we shot Faith onstage in Nashville,” states Levy. “On day 2 we shot the trophy and all 42 previous Super Bowl rings.”

He attests that the biggest challenge was turnaround. “By the time we were able to commit to an idea, “he says, “we had to source the materials that didn’t exist in Nashville.” Despite the rush, the results spawned a gem.

“How valuable and priceless these artifacts are,” beams Levy. “They embody a depth and expanse far beyond material value, because of their history. And really amazing are the security measures taken to ensure safe travel for them.”

Levy finds it awe-inspiring to have been able work with and film the Lombardi trophy and Super Bowl rings, and stresses the importance of continuing to work with artists like Hill. “It was a real honor to work with her,” he says, ” having the opportunity to work with Faith’s natural beauty and that beauty crafted into the trophy and feather the historic natural of the rings. As a football fan, I can tell you that nothing is more impressive!”

NBC’s Rob Hyland served as director. The director of photography was Samson Chan. The executive producer for the production was Fred Gaudelli, whose own producer, Charlie Vanacore, donated time and effort. Levy’s producer, John Mullins, was invaluable. NBC’s production manager was Cathy Driscoll. NFL’s Nancy Behar and Nicki Ewell lent their assistance. And Zenith Lighting of Orlando “came through huge.”

HABANA Avenue is a full-service TV, film, live event and concert-experience production company and an original content creator. The company has offices in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami’s South Beach and Tampa. It maintains a boutique post-production facility in Tampa and has post-production partnerships with the full-service Mad Toy Box Post in Charlotte, North Carolina and Vidiots in New York City.

David Steinberg – Millimeter Digital Content Producer The Briefing Room