The Metro Detroit-Based Company’s Lead Editor, Dave Crosslin, Takes The Heat, Cutting The Fast Paced Live-Action + Interactive Campaign on Location In The Nevada Desert
Commonwealth/McCann’s live-action and interactive digital campaign introducing the new 2014 Corvette Stingray C7, which called upon Territory’s full-service approach to editorial, finishing, color grading, audio and sound design, has received the distinction of Official Honoree at the 18th Annual Webby Awards in the ‘Digital Campaign’ category. Directed by Jon+Torrey out of B-Reel, the fast-paced package, entitled, ‘Biometric Test Drive,’ is comprised of a mix of interrelated videos, including “Biometric Test Drive Precision Mode Video Challenge,” Biometric Trailer, “ six ‘Influencer’ videos, and interactive programming showcasing the luxury features and cutting edge technology that makes getting behind the wheel of the new C7 an exciting driving experience.
Shot in the desert at Spring Mountain Motor Sports Ranch, Nevada, the project presented a Tsunami of challenges – from Intense heat, sand storms, rough terrain to fast moving weather systems – causing equipment issues and testing deadlines. Territory’s lead creative editor and supervisor, Dave Crosslin, worked closely with Commonwealth Team producer Matt Flaker, art director Brian Mekjian and copywriter Ryan McCarthy, and the directors. Working as a collective they devised ways to adapt the production to the unpredictable elements, blocking out footage that would fit within each video concept, talking through the scope of the project, working out the shots and the running changes that needed to be made as the job evolved.
To capture ‘seamless’ laps as the drivers put the Stingray through its paces, the complex shoot called for over 20 GoPro cameras to be mounted at various points around the track. The extreme heat caused many of them to malfunction, costing the crew valuable time and data, and challenging them to come up with innovative options.
The ‘Biometric Test Drive Precision Mode Video Challenge,” the centerpiece of the campaign, provides an overview of the new C7 model and its groundbreaking technology. The piece shares insights and perspectives of everyone from professional drivers and engineers to the writer of a car blog and an avid automobile enthusiast.
Stingray’s ‘Biometric Test Drive’ Interactive program was created by B-Reel to provide visitors to the website, (Vimeo.com/channels/corvette,) with an opportunity to participate in four distinct challenges designed to test their precision skills and analyze their performance as they ‘drive’ the Stingray.
The series of six ‘Influencer’ videos (Influencer: Evan Orensten,” “Influencer: Kelly Olexa,” “Influencer: Philip Cooley,” “Influencer: Terry McFly,“ and “Influencer: Kazunori Yamauchi,”) introduces each one of the ‘real people’ selected to test driver the car, and shares their backgrounds and some memories that contributed to their emotional connection to automobiles. The videos also incorporating pioneering scientific research techniques, which were developed and supervised by a team of researchers and doctors to provide biometric feedback about each driver’s experience.
During these fast-paced driving sequences these participants were outfitted with multiple sensors that monitored their brain waves to gather information, such as the heart rate, blood pressure, respiratory rates, electro-dermal activity and pulse, which appears as graphics on the screen during the test-drives. In addition, the videos include commentary from the car’s engineers that provides an overview of the kind of groundbreaking features that have become synonymous with the Corvette brand.
“The fact that the ‘Influencer’ videos called for “real people’ driving the car – coupled with the obstacles presented by the extreme desert conditions – saturated the project with unknowns,” says Crosslin. “Being on-site when issues came up allowed all parties to collaborate in real-time and make changes on the fly, ensuring that the final content would all come together effectively and convey its compelling message.”
“Matt Flaker, Commonwealth’s producer, as well as art director Brian Mekjian and copywriter Ryan McCarthy, brought incredible passion for all aspects of this project, and were invaluable during the process of shaping a cohesive vision for the creative elements, as well as keeping the pieces as authentic as possible,” says Crosslin. “In a campaign as focused on cutting edge technology as this one, its great to see how chemistry with the creative team not only makes the project fun, but how it can make it better as well.”
Territory, the multi award-winning creative editorial and post-production company, brought its full-service approach to the complex package, enabling it to provide the kind of seamless workflow this project demanded – from rough-cut through delivery. Once production wrapped, Dave returned to the metro Detroit facility where he finished cutting the project in a Final Cut Suite, while working in tandem with the interactive arm of B-Reel. Territory met a string of tight deadlines, providing initial rough cuts for two of the long format videos within four days, which were then sent to the production company’s California office as templates to be integrated into the various media components.
Finisher Brent Edwards collaborated with the members of B-Reel’s digital team on set during the production, to ensure that the cutting of the programming optimized the interactive aspects of the digital content. Edwards online conformed and composited the content on Territory’s cutting-edge Quantel Pablo Rio and followed through, color-grading the majority of the campaign’s components. Then, working from Territory’s facility with the clients sitting in, Crosslin ‘virtually’ supervised Filmworkers Chicago’s Mike Mazur as he color graded the trailer and interactive content.
“Determining a pace and structure of the videos that would support the interactive elements – before they existed – was the biggest technical challenge of the project,” says Crosslin. “The duration and location of the interactive components changed multiple times, causing a rippling effect that demanded major adjustments to production, as well as the editing of the videos – so our approach had to be fluid and constantly evolving.”
“Territory was tasked with delivering a series of pieces that highlight the technical and aesthetic achievements of the car, both inside and out,” says senior producer Joan Porter. “In addition, conveying the reactions of the ‘real people’ driving the vehicles and communicating the statistics related to their driving experience with graphics, as well as providing a framework for the interactive content, which simulated features from the car’s design added another set of challenges. Working as a team our staff provided the kind of seamless workflow and continuity required to meet the demands of this job.”
Audio was a key to creating the mood and feel of the campaign, and Territory’s in-house audio suite, a satellite division of Detroit’s award-winning Gold Sound, enabled the company to extend their full-service approach to the helming the audio and sound phase of the project.
“Working on Pro Tools, Bryan Gold, head of Gold Sound, brought his experience with rigging engines for sound to the table, which proved to be essential to meeting the challenge of polishing the raw audio, while still maintaining its authenticity for auto enthusiasts. Once the car sounds were designed and blocked, the list of music house the agency provided for original scores.
“The 2014 Corvette Stingray launch was a complex cross-platform campaign cohesively integrated into a captivating story,” says Crosslin. “The unpredictable desert shoot and constantly evolving nature of the production, along with constraints on time challenged Territory’s team to come up with innovative solutions while maintaining the pace and stamina necessary to explore a wide range of creative options, and then develop the most efficient and effective strategies into engaging content.
“Anytime Territory works on a car spot that involves a new vehicle, it is inherently an evolving process and considerably more complex,” says Porter. “We understand that the agency only gets one chance to launch a new vehicle, and, while the amount of detail that needed to be integrated into their message can be daunting, Territory’s team of editors and finishers are masters at weaving all of these element into an exciting and compelling visual story – and delivered a final product we’re all proud of.”
Product: 2014 Corvette Stingray’s Digital Campaign
Titles/Lengths: Biometrics Test Drive’ Campaign
Campaign: 2014 Stingray Corvette Biometric Test Drive
“Biometric Test Drive Precision Mode Video Challenge”
“Biometric Test Drive: Full Trailer”
Individual Pre-Rolls: “Stunning,” “Perfectly, “‘Mind-Bending”
Influencer Videos: “Influencer: Evan Orensten,” “Influencer: Kelly Olexa,” “Influencer: Philip Cooley,” “Influencer: Terry McFly, “ “Influencer: Kazunori Yamauchi”
Type of Project: Live-Action + Interactive Campaign
Client: Chevy Corvette Stingray
Advertising Agency: Commonwealth // McCann
Chief Creative Officer: Linus Karlsson
Executive Creative Directors: Andreas Dahlqvist
Senior Art Director: Brian Mekjian
Senior Copywriter: Ryan McCarthy
Chief Production Officer: Brian DiLorenzo
Director of Content: Jeff Beverly
Senior Integrated Producer: Matt Flaker
Senior Interactive Producer: Noah Schusterbauer
Director of Technology: James Vreeland
Business Affairs Manager: Stacy Swann
Account Director: Bill Wilt
Account Manger: John Omtvedt
Product Insights: Ryan Wallace
Production Company: B-REEL (Los Angeles, CA)
Director: Jon + Torey
Director of Photography: Jordan Valenti
Creative Director: Dave Felton
Creative Director: Ryan Jacobs
Executive Producer / President: Susan Anderson
Producer: Michael Tavendale
Producer: David Wolfson
Location: Spring Mountain Motor Sports Ranch, Nevada
Editorial Company: Territory (Ferndale, MI)
Editor: Dave Crosslin, Zach Dufresne
Assistant Editor: Lisa Roberts, Nicole Finateri, Jonathan Chatten
Finishing: Brent Edwards
Executive Producer: Joan Porter
VFX and Finishing Company: Territory (Ferndale, MI)
Flame Lead: Brent Edwards
Colorist: Brent Edwards
Colorist: Film Workers – Mike Mazur (supervised by Dave Crosslin)
Audio Post Company: Gold Sound (Gold Sound @ Territory)
Mixer: Marc LaRochelle, Brian Gold
Executive Producer: Paula Gold
Music Company: Massive Music
Producer: Jessica Entner
Voice over: John Cusack