Baltimore video mixes pictures with passion Uses pulse to tug at owners' hearts


It was Baltimore in microcosm, an 8-minute, 2-second video that attempted to capture the pulse and passion of a city, and the hearts of 28 NFL owners.

The Baltimore delegation showed its $50,000 video in its expansion bid Tuesday.

"Only film could bring the city to life to the owners," said Pat Kahoe, writer/director of Big Shot Productions, which produced the film. "Only film could honestly capture the support and enthusiasm of the fans, and the community in general. We wanted to paint a picture of Baltimore as a robust, thriving place."

Not only in pictures, but words, too. "A New Baltimore" and "Urban Renaissance" are phrases that are constantly repeated in the film.

And of course, "Give Baltimore the Ball" is used a lot, especially after promises about a new stadium, a $1 million payout to visiting teams and a $1-a-year lease for an expansion team.

The film opens with a monologue from Baltimorean Jim McKay explaining how his job as a sportscaster took him around the world for 30 years, but he still kept up with the Orioles and the Colts through the International Herald Tribune.

Then there are segments with corporate heavyweights, such as Raymond A. "Chip" Mason, chairman of Legg Mason; Mathias J. DeVito, chairman and CEO of the Rouse Co.; Larry Lucchino, Orioles vice chairman; Frank Bramble, former president of MNC Financial Inc.; and Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke, all talking about the urban renaissance of Baltimore in the past 20 years.

The film contains glittering night shots of the Inner Harbor and a packed Oriole Park at Camden Yards, which is billed as the Field of Dreams.

There are helicopter shots of Preakness Week activities, neighborhood fairs, Fells Point, the National Aquarium, Lexington Market, Fort McHenry and Oriole Park.

The film also features blue-collar workers, a telephone repairman climbing a pole, a construction worker eating lunch.

"We wanted to capture all of Baltimore," said Kahoe, who spent 14 days shooting the film. "One of the best things about making this film was the participation we got from the corporate types, or the average person, who would let us take several pictures while they were eating their lunch."

There are highlights from the old days of the Colts. John Unitas passing to Willie Richardson and sellout crowds at Memorial Stadium.

And, of course, there's Alan Ameche slamming over the goal line for the winning touchdown in the Colts' 1958 championship game against the New York Giants.

It was a touching moment, complete with the narrative line, "Give Baltimore the ball, and we'll give you history all over again."

It was a film that played on emotion, from the screaming fans at the recent All-Star Game, to the emotional speech by former Orioles third baseman Brooks Robinson upon induction to the Hall of Fame, to the city's latest sports hero, Cal Ripken.

The film, though, ends with none other than No. 19, Johnny U., running around right end for a touchdown.

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