We used to have a battle at the office when prepping a television shoot: 35 mm film versus Super 16. It was a valiant fight that the bean counters typically won. Why? Film is expensive. And you could only allot for so much on a TV shoot. Which meant actors, directors and the cameramen (and women!) had to be on their A game at all times. Because after two takes, the account folks started to sweat going over budget.
Then came digital technology – where cameras like the RED meant you could shoot as many takes as you needed because film was irrelevant. More than that – it didn’t look like video. It looked good. Really good. This is when the account folks stopped sweating… and started crying tears of joy.
Who else cried tears of joy recently? Jonathan Friedman. He’s the consumer who shot the Doritos Burying Cat spot using a local actor and a local dog and I’m guessing his own Video D-SLR camera. To be honest, he’s actually a graphic designer – so he must have some sensibilities for advertising. But he’s now $1 million richer thanks to his ad winning the highest score from the USA Today newspaper panel. You know what else? He also won our Chernoff Newman poll. (Sorry Jonathan – we weren’t awarding any cash prizes).
So what does this mean exactly?
1) Production quality has overcome some of the limitations of expensive equipment. I say some because I’d like to see any one of you try to pull off our second place winner Audi Vampire Party in their own backyard.
2) People love to see dogs on screen. This year we had a number of dog-related spots to enjoy. And apparently the cat people are up in arms over the Doritos spot. So, I should probably say that people love to see their pets alive on screen.
3) A celebrity endorsement is not always the way to people’s hearts. Sorry Elton. And Jerry Seinfeld. And Nikki Six. And even Clint Eastwood (which, by the way, Ronald Regan’s son called – he wants his campaign speech back).
If you voted, thanks for playing. If you didn’t and want to see the results, hit up our Facebook wall. I look forward to what Super Bowl XLVII will bring.