Dmitri Young makes a comeback (view this story)

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Rep: 14
Tony Overman May 28, 2010, 12:23 p.m. permalink

Oh Eric, I love watching your stories! They always start with great audio, and are very clean and smooth to watch.
Yes, this is probably a local story, but with interest to anyone who knew his story before. You did a great job of making me interested in this guy who I honestly had never heard of.
Definitely would have liked to hear from at least one of the younger players he now mentors. I liked that you had two different focal lengths on your interview with Dmitri...it gave you some variety.
The old photos are absolutely necessary. There are probably too many, and some that didn't really work for me. (for some reason, the wide overall of the ballpark in the rain bugged me...even though Dmitri was talking about rain...it didn't seem to fit.) Actually, that whole thing about getting to go home when it rains didn't make much sense to me...didn't relate to the story.
The b-roll of Dmitri coaching was beautiful. I absolutely loved the low shot of him hitting the fly ball...great pop of the bat and following the ball into the air.
The final quote "this is where I want to be..." as you fade to black felt tacked on and unnecessary.
I thought "...it's a challenge. And I love a challenge" would have been a better ending.

Rep: 15
Kathy Strauss May 28, 2010, 1:54 p.m. permalink

Eric -- I'm a big fan of yours and I'm always happy to watch your stories.

I'm not much of a baseball buff so a story like this has to pull me in with a strong character. Dmitri was an alcoholic and accused of domestic abuse a few years ago, so it might take some doing to get me to like him. You almost do that with the footage of him coaching and all the smiley archival photos, but I want more from him! Who is he? How/why did he change? Did he really change?

No, I don't think it's too local of a story because a compelling character can overcome that issue.

Yes, I definitely wish I could have heard more voices -- maybe one of the young men he coaches or even better, one of his family members or friends who he says helped him get back on track.

I watched the story three times because I really wanted to hear what he was saying and it was hard to take it all in. He kind of jumps all over the place with different topics. In this case maybe a little more breathing space in the video would allow the viewer to really take in what he's saying.

I agree with Tony about the ending quote. The one right before it is stronger.

By the way, I love your signature use of nat sound at the beginning and ending of stories. It's really cool.

Rep: 444
Submitter
Eric Seals May 28, 2010, 3:32 p.m. permalink

Thanks for checking it out and giving me feedback Tony and Kathy

You guys are spot on with the end of the video. I should of gone with my gut and jjust left it with "it's a challenge. And I love a challenge"
Sometimes with the end credits I like to have some audio underneath as my name and freep.com are being shown but if feels bad so good call on that, I'll change it.

I wanted to have another player in there but I only spent a few hours with him during the teams spring training in early May and they had just met Dmitri. None were really able to speak in detail at all about their thoughts on Dmitri since they had just met him and I felt it would of been forced and that I did it just to add another voice to the piece. Even the coach who helped bring Dmitri in was bad, it was all "coach speak" UGH!

The print story that was in the paper and on the web was a really good compliment to the video where the reporter had more voices and brought the whole thing together.

I put the two rain pictures in for a visual as he talked about being retired and could leave a game if it rain versus before having to stick it out as a ball player. Maybe I should have just left that part out, a few others said the same thing.

Kathy, you wanted more of the "Who is he? How/why did he change? Did he really change?" The print/web story kind of answers those questions but it was really hard to get that into 1:30 minute for web and TV. I could of expanded the video for web only but I just ran out of time and had to move onto my next video feature but good of you to point that out.

That's one challenge for a short piece for TV to make it as informational and visually interesting as possible. Sometimes if I do have time I'll make a longer piece for the web (where I can put in some of those things you mentioned) and then cut, cut, cut for TV.

Thanks again,

Eric

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