I’ve mentioned before, a company that I have worked with in the past called Maritz Canada (see Focus-ing at Ontario Place post). Anyways, this posting is about another job that I did for them last year. This job came after I went on an interview for an Art Director position, one that I clearly had no business applying for, but I really wanted to be involved with the company so I went for it. I was pleasantly surprised to get an interview, but by the time it ended the lady interviewing me said, “you sound way more like a video Producer than an Art Director, why did you apply for this job?” Well, to make a long story short I then discussed a Producer role and met with the VP of Marketing who between the two of them connected me with a team that was under the gun and in need of someone to produce a spot for one of their accounts…Blackberry.
When I met with the team, Matthew and Dana they told me about a project that they had an idea for but needed someone to pull together. We discussed the project in detail and they asked me if I could do it. I told them that I could and immediately jumped into the pre-production with them planning the creative and getting clarity on the messaging. ~aside… one of the things I really believe is that there is a message in every video, or at least there should be. Every shot should tell its own little version of a story and contribute to the larger message. Video without a message is pointless! ~ After our meeting was over I went home feeling really excited to be able to Produce this spot and eager to get started.
The team shortly after sent me a Creative Brief and asked how much it would cost to do so I got started crunching numbers, putting in calls for vendors, gear, locations etc. when I had all of that info on paper and had done my “Pre-production” I got back to them with a number and they approved it. Now, this was not a small budget as far as things go. I had people to hire, equipment to rent, locations to secure, insurance coverage to attain…shoot…I even rented a TTC bus (Toronto Transit for all those non-Torontonians reading). I didn’t even know that you could rent a TTC until I needed one…then it dawned on me…you can rent anything!
The shoot has 6 locations which included a nice room at the Westin Harbour Castle, A Toronto Raptors game at the ACC, a TTC Bus/ street, a bar, a cafeteria and an office. I hired 8 actors, a lighting tech, a steadicam operator, a Production Manager, makeup, storyboard artist, voice talent, photographer and I shot Main camera plus edited. There was food each of the 2 days of shooting and a seriously tight timeline to maintain, and thanks to my good friend Claude (whom I have mentioned before), we stayed on schedule.
This project was executed in 2 days, edited in 6 days and delivered just under budget! (big plus for the client), and the feedback was that it far exceeded their expectations. Yeah!
This project was a serious test of my skills on the Production front because within 1 day I had to get pricing and logistics basically locked down to commence a daunting timeline and deliver an above average project…I did it, and this is one of the pieces that ended up getting me a lot of work with other companies as a Producer, not just a shooter/ editor.
So here it is, for your consideration…my first production for Maritz Canada…Life on Blackberry apps