A few weeks after the lockdown began in the spring of 2020, we received an inquiry from an agency in Kentucky we’d worked with several times before. At first we couldn’t believe our eyes, after getting in touch with the client we discovered that this project had been in limbo since the prior December and the client was finally ready to move forward.
When our contact asked if we thought we could make it happen, f course I said yes but as soon as we’dI hung up the phone we were asking ourselves, "How are we were going to make it happen with the world in lockdown?"
The project consisted of two spots that each required twelve unique women delivering the same lines directly to the camera. Given the unique conditions of the time, like face masks and social distancing, we needed a strategy for the shoot that didn’t require people to expose themselves to risk for the sake of the production.
We had every woman read the entire script, to provide the editor with ample choices and possibilities. It’s impossible to which line, from which person, might pull the whole project togetherWe can’t plan everything perfectly, so we shoot everything, to create the most opportunities for lightning to strike. Since no agency or client representatives were in attendance during the shoot, nor was there a team viewing remotely, so we were essentially on our own during the entire production.
We had everyone self-cast, and we selected the talent for the shoot from those takes. To simplify the logistics of keeping everyone safe, we asked them if they'd be comfortable being filmed in front of their own homes. Most were fine with the idea since nobody wanted to out and about in April of 2020.
This was our first production during COVID, but we’d planned very carefully and taken every precaution, so we “masked up” and went to work.. We kept the team small and brought only minimal gear, so things took a little longer than usual but we finished the project only two days over our typical schedule. Most importantly, the cast and crew were all kept safe and healthy and client was happy.
The agency that hired us, and their client were satisfied and said that felt that we delivered their messages in an authentic fashion, considering the circumstances at hand. On our end, it was a great experience and a chance to challenge ourselves to adapt to the evolving demands of the times we’re living through.