Thursday, April 12, 2018

Southwest Airlines "Garage"


Producer: Michael Leary

Director: Michael Leary

DP: Robert Mickles

Writer: Dan Sorgen

Editor/Colorist: Michael Leary

Assistant Director: Dwayne Taylor

Gaffer: Matt Morrison

Set PA: Jackie Nelms

Set PA: Sam Lipinski

Sound: Dave Willis Lorenz

Sound Designer/Sound Mixer: Dave DeLizza

Hair/Make Up: Sara Griswold

Cast: Josh Powell

Why this script/concept? How does it reflect your vision as a commercial director?

This script reflects my comedic style which I consider over-the top and inspired by the classic Looney Tunes cartoons. As soon as I read it I wanted to shoot it. It also happens to be the second spot I directed written by Dan Sorgen. Our styles seem to mesh pretty well. 

What was the casting process like?

I worked with Josh Powell on a regional spot I directed a couple of years ago and when I read Dan's script, he was my first choice. He has the acting chops and the look for the part. I wanted someone who has a somewhat vulnerable, every day suburban look. 

How did you search for/lock a location?

I have close friends that I knew had a nice size, modern garage. They were kind enough to let us use it and they had a blast watching us shoot. I am always a big fan of single location commercial shoots. It gives you much more time to get what you want out of the day.

How did you select your DP, crew?

The DP Robert Mickles is someone I have worked with on many projects. We have developed a good working relationship over the years and he is the type of guy that just loves to work. He and the rest of the crew have been very generous with the time they have devoted to this shoot and others I have shot for my reel. Most of them have been working with me for some time and are always very professional and fun on set. Let me say that I have many favors to repay! :)

How did shooting go? Any challenges?

The shoot went very smoothly. A few weeks before the shoot I tested the ability to jump and land in the wagon so that it looked realistic as it rolled towards the saw. After many tests we were able to get it down so that on the shoot day it was ready to go. Safety was an obvious concern and with shooting the correct angle and with the right lens, we were able to get the illusion the actor was closer to the saw than he really was. 

Tell us about editing and finishing.

Editing the commercial went very smoothly. I cut and colored the spot, and my good friend and colleague Dave DeLizza did the post sound design and mixing. Building the suspense with the music and sound design was very important to make the spot work, and Dan Sorgen collaborated and gave great recommendations in this process. Dave DeLizza did a great job in bringing his ear to the project and polishing it off.

In retrospect, is there anything you would have done differently?

For this spot, there is not much if anything I would of done differently. I learned a lot and will surely carry that over to the next spot whether it be for a client or on spec.

Any other thoughts.

Thank you Dan for writing a funny spot that was very fun to shoot, and thank you to the cast and crew. I'm looking forward to the next one!