The Emmys, the Oscars for television, celebrated the inauguration of a Spanish speaking category this year. ESPN received 7 awards, bringing their count up to 160 in only 27 years. For today’s post, we interviewed Javier Ortiz, member of the SportsCenter production team which won ‘Best Studio Show’.
Hello Javier. What exactly does your job consists of at ESPN?
I am an editor and post-producer.
Describe your typical day for us.
I arrive, check my assignments before heading towards the editing room. The PAs [production assistants] bring me the notes I have to make, already with a certain amount of editing, and I post-produce them, which consists mainly of correcting audio and color, inserting the required graphics and publishing them in their respective server so they can be broadcasted.
In a few words, what are your favorite and least favorite things about your work?
My least favorite is definitely schedules. The industry is so demanding that whenever anybody else is resting, we are at work. My favorite thing is that it is about sports. ESPN is the worldwide leader in sports with a multinational presence with very high standards. My brothers and I have been watching ESPN since we were very young and to be working with them today, to see how everything is done, it all brings me great satisfaction. I like the adrenaline, generating news under pressure and the rhythm at work. There is also an excellent work environment.
How did you get a dream job at the young age of 25? Tell us the story.
I was helping a classmate edit a video for university. Another classmate came along and told me that if I like editing there was a job opening at Argos. I went to the interview and did well, but was told to wait for the project. At the facilities, I realized they managed ESPN for Mexico. That same week, my classmate told me that there was a job opening for ESPN. I sent my résumé, got called in for an appointment and I went to an interview with the editing supervisor. Despite my lack of experience, they liked my profile and I got in.
You studied communication in college, is that right?
That is correct.
Do you have any advice for those who dream of working at a major media company, sports or otherwise?
Yes. Always take advantage of your college education, because you have a lot of learning opportunities as well as access to resources. It is better to learn during college than to have to catch up once you’re working. It is important to gain experience in your field of interest especially because it is a time when you don’t have to focus on making money and you can concentrate on learning all you can.
How does it feel to be an Emmy winner?
I myself am not an Emmy winner. I am part of very large team that won this award. I am very proud, but I am aware that I am a very small part of the group and a relatively new member. I feel proud of working for such a great team that has been recognized at an international level.
Barcelona – Atlético for La Liga. Real Madrid – Atletico for the Champions League. Leon – Pachuca for the Mexican league. Who will win?
My heart and colors are too much for me. I say Barcelona will win, but Atletico is a great team. If anybody can steal the title from Barça and Madrid, it is Atletico because of their style, their enthusiasm, hard work, team effort and allegiance to their coach.
It is definitely a case that can only happen in Mexico, where two teams from the same company face each other in the final, something which has caused a lot of controversy again. That aside, I really like Leon. Style and effort. Keeping due proportions, they remind me precisely of Atletico Madrid.
Messi, Ronaldo, Ibrahimovic or Ribery?
What soccer teams are you a fan of besides Barcelona?
I am a Nexaca fan because I grew up in the 90s. There are many other teams that I admire, like Fiorentina and Liverpool because of their history and significance or Borussia Dortmund´s style, but I wouldn’t really call myself a fan. I don´t believe you have to be fan of a team in each league.
What other sports do you like?
I also enjoy football. Since I started working at ESPN, I have found basketball more interesting.
What teams do you like in these sports?
In football, I like Indianapolis, the Colts. In basketball I don’t really have a team, but I have respect for the Bulls because I got to see Michael Jordan play for them. The Pacers are a good team as well.
The World Cup is coming up. Mexico’s chances. Finalists and winner?
There are few teams about which I can’t be objective. Mexico is one of them. I think they can make it to the second phase but that’s about it. Brazil is always a favorite, especially being the host team. Argentina has a great team as well and if any European team can win in the Americas, it is Germany. Belgium is a country that is going to surprise a lot of people; they are going to have a great World Cup.
Who would you bet for?
I’d go for Argentina.
You are Mexican. How do you feel about the fact that there are over 50 million Hispanics in the United States and that that number will continue to grow? How does it relate to your industry?
It’s a reflection of the reality that the country is living. The opportunities for people here in Mexico aren’t many and there also many issues with security, politics, corruption. It is understandable but sad that people have to leave to other countries for a better life.
It is very relevant for us, because our channel is directed towards a Hispanic audience in the US. At the end of the day, the greater the market, the larger the demand.
Thank you for the interview, good luck and we hope you keep on with your success.
Thank you. I would like to comment that I was once told that if you do what you like, you won’t have to work a single day of your life. I invite you not to work, just fight for your dreams and enjoy them.