With the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup beginning Friday and ESPN featuring extensive multimedia coverage in the U.S. and around the world, ESPN Digital & Print Media and SportsCenter needed a short, engaging introductory primer to cricket which could initiate the unknowing American fan and entertain the billions of knowledgeable followers.
The creation of the video above, which is one of five vignettes running during SportsCenter and on ESPN.com this week, became a global collaboration.
Joy Russo (deputy editor, ESPN Digital & Print Media), Michael Shiffman (senior coordinating producer) and Neil Jamieson (creative director, ESPN Digital & Print Media) turned to ESPNcricinfo’s U.S.-based editor Peter Della Penna to develop a script. The goal: produce a video that was both authentic and informative.
Jamieson, a native Brit working in ESPN’s Bristol, Conn. turned to Cub Studios – a London-based creative agency and animation studio – to help. A nice touch: Sound engineer Morgan Samuel spent hours in his Wellington, New Zealand backyard with a cricket bat to capture the perfect “thwack” of cork and leather on willow.
The resulting video, voiced by SportsCenter’s Kevin Negandhi, gives the uninitiated a two-minute-drill in the basics of cricket.