A key scene took place as the sun went down. We really only had one night to get things right, and could only hope the weather would hold for us. It did!
I knew the fire and the lights on the trailers would need to motivate the light sources on our talent, but I wanted the background to feel natural without falling into pure blackness. Nature came through for us with a nice blue in the sky and silhouetted trees for the closeup. Lingering skylight augmented by a softbox provided a slight illumination to the opposite trees in the wide shot. I think it worked out!
An adventure in the Kentucky woods provided a great break from being stuck at home in the suburbs!
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY
Some of my favorite adventure movies / books growing up were Indiana Jones, National Treasure, and The Da Vinci Code. These films centered on the protagonist and audience having to dig deep into the mystery and history of a period of time to pull out some ancient nugget of wisdom. I wanted the sequences to reflect that. To me, the first shot had to scream- “Who is this guy?” and “what is he thinking about / preparing to do?” Pushing him back on the z- axis, keeping his back to camera, and obscuring his face whenever possible with his hat and different objects felt like a great way to accomplish that throughout the commercial.
My family was a big help in helping me procure an array of whiskey bottles. Scraping off labels and filling them with tea was a big help. Hitting up Hobby Lobby and thinking about anything with texture to add to the project-- hay, burlap, etc, turned out to be great.
I am a big believer that audiences are smarter than most make them out to be, and if you give them enough layers to disentangle and slosh around in their heads, they are going to watch something again and again.
After learning more about Sam’s business, it really felt like he was as much a focal point as his horse trailers, and I wanted the piece to really sell both. You just want to get to know what this enigmatic person is up to.
Director / Line Producer: Kenneth Stevenson
Senior Producer: Dylan Pieri
Associate Producer: Andrew Bennett
Production Manager: Andrew McArthur
DP: Bobby Dalley
Assistant Camera / Art: Shane Dresch
Editor: Kenneth Stevenson
Color: Bobby Dalley
Audio Mastering: Danny Delaney
VO Artist: Chris Arias
Score: Stephen Keesh- "Rise"