Monday, September 19, 2011
Sophisticated, With A Touch of Gnarly
The creative team at Duncan Channon brought us in to create this ad for Gnarly Head Wine in the early spring. Alot of times there are projects that seem to hinge on one crucial element. With Gnarly, I really can't envision it without the character of our talent Lawrence Clark. Lawrence never showed up for our first casting. We spent the late afternoon coaching prospective models thru our method acting approach:
Ok....so you are like....elegant....well bred...you've always had the best of everything...given to you and earned by you. Amidst this all you are tough...you live life to it's physical fullest...you can still rip it up outside, get eaten alive by your environment...crash your mountain bike...and still savor life and toast the sunset....got that?
Time and time again we ran thru these words...these words of motivation...to get the talent into our roles. We had a Tony Danza look-a-like. We got a guy who could smile. We got another guy who had the rough, but he really had no elegance. The next morning we had agreed to come in and cast again, Lawrence would be there.
Lawrence arrives a bit flustered. The receptionist follows him into our room with a glass of orange juice. People wait on him, people clear the way for him, simply out of instinct. We give him our pitch, in a lazy half hearted way:
Ok...you're the rich guy, but rough guy too. Got that?
Lawrence looks at us and becomes the role: A subtle eyebrow lift. A sneer that falls into a smile. A bit of arrogance, a bit of charm. His body starts to inhabit the space with a sense of privledge. We snap a few photographs of him there in the crowded office and look at each other silently.
I walk him out and thank him for coming. I come back to the room with the creatives and the feeling is universal: he was everything we wanted....we have our talent.