In his new article, published in Spanish on October 11th in LatamCinema.com Steve Solot, LATC President, and Associate for Latin America, Olsberg•SPI, addresses the dramatic need for a skilled professional workforce to meet the growing demand for audiovisual content production in Latin America.
The Bottleneck that Can Limit the Growth of the Latin American Audiovisual Ecosystem
By Steve Solot
Latin America and the Caribbean is experiencing an audiovisual boom that has generated a growing demand for technical production and post-production crews to meet the needs of streaming services in content production. However, most countries of the region are not prepared to meet this demand. Although many productions were paused due to the pandemic, a rapid recovery is expected and, consequently, a greater demand for qualified teams of technical “below the line” professionals for production of audiovisual content.
The new publication of the Inter-American Development Bank-IDB “Behind the scenes: creativity and investment for Latin America and the Caribbean: Lessons learned from a conversation with key voices in the audiovisual sector” highlights the need to provide training so that the industry can continue to grow. According to the results of a survey commissioned by the IDB and carried out by the independent international consultancy Olsberg SPI, the below-the-line positions with the highest demand include production designer, VFX, stunt coordinator, script supervisor, Covid safety supervisor, and special effects supervisor.
The “LATC Technical Update Program for Audiovisual Professionals 2021” is a pilot program of the Latin American Training Center carried out remotely and aimed at technical audiovisual (below-the-line) professionals in various Latin American countries. Taught by renowned industry professionals, with local support of associations and entities from the private and public sectors, the format is a series of 10 master classes of 2-3 hours each, covering the main stages of the audiovisual production chain: pre-production, production, and post-production.
This year LATC technical training programs have been held in Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia, with an average of 150 attendees in each class. Currently, a joint program is underway for Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru, and a separate one for Mexico. A new edition is also planned for the end of the year in Central America and the Caribbean. All programs function as previews of versions of longer courses for 2022.
Public policies planning for technical training should focus on:
1) Coordination with local industry.
2) Creation, development, and provision of (below-the-line) technical courses for all levels.
3) Funding for continuous technical training.
4) Support for a variety of professional learning initiatives such as on-the-job internships, part-time hiring by production companies, and shadowing (observation of professional roles in the workplace).