Spec Commercial Questions
Posted 30 June 2005 - 04:08 PM
I'm a director, looking to get into the ad world, and my DP and I are getting ready to shoot two 35mm spec spots. I've run into a small situation, however.
I've decided to do two different spots on 35, a car commercial, complete with flatbed truck, crane, and aerial shots over a canyon, and a funny acting based spot. My dillema lies in the car commercial. I have access to a Saab turbo convertible, and a very exotic Lotus convertible, but I cannot decide which is the smarter route to follow..
My gut instinct is to go with the Saab, rather than the Lotus, simply because the demographic of individuals wishing to purchase a Lotus convertible is rather slim, in my mind anyway, at least less so than a Saab. But these commercials will never air, and will just be a representation of my ability to sell a product.
Basically, I just want some opinions to help me decide which would be the best bet for me.
Jeremy C. Russell
Posted 30 June 2005 - 04:23 PM
If the Lotus makes for a better ad, go with the Lotus. If the Saab will give you a better ad, go with the Saab.
My two cents...
Posted 30 June 2005 - 04:25 PM
I don't think it matters which car you use on a brand level. You're not trying to sell the car, you're selling yourself.
The deciding factors for me would be:
Which car looks the best -both generally and in terms of particular features.
What colors are the cars you have access to - some colors look better than others in ads.
Posted 03 July 2005 - 11:28 AM
Posted 03 July 2005 - 11:05 PM
Posted 03 July 2005 - 11:51 PM
I usually find specs to be a lot longer then TV ads...is that preferable?
No. You want to give the impression that what people are watching is a real commercial. So producing a spec that has a running time that exceeds the 30 or 60 second industry standards, defeats that purpose and is one of the clearest indications to an agency producer that they're watching a spec spot.
Edited by Wendell_Greene, 03 July 2005 - 11:53 PM.
Posted 04 July 2005 - 01:06 AM
Posted 04 July 2005 - 11:07 AM
Cool thanks Wendell. How about the rights to use a product? Can I use whatever I want, including using graphics of the company logo like the Nike swoop for example, and not face an legal issues?
You're welcome, David.
I preface this by saying I'm not an attorney and I'm not very knowledgable about copyright law, but I don't believe using a company's logo in a spec would necessarily bring any legal trouble toward you, unless you were to alter their logo or corporate brand, or use it in a way to put the company and it's product(s) in an unfavorable light.
For example, filming a Nike spec set in a dystopian Third World basement sweatshop full of starving children, forced to chew on betel nut for the energy to meet their quota of Nike Lebron "King James" basketball shoes, while an angry mountain of an man towers over them waving a whip and screaming at the top of his lungs, and ending with the Nike logo and the words "JUST DO IT!" might be an excellent comment on the state of world affairs and the corporate abuse of child labor laws, but it certainly wouldn't get you work from Weiden and Kennedy or Nike.
Sometimes, though, taking a risk pays off. This irreverent, politically divisive spec spot for Volkswagen's Polo "Bad Terrorist" was made by director's Lee and Dan. They claim it was solely intended for their reel to show to agencies and was never intended for public viewing. Volkswagen distanced themselves from the spot as it circulated on the Internet and they even threatened legal action. "Volkswagen Threaten Legal Action" [ Some industry people have contested that Volkswagen knew all about this spot and that they were part and parcel to the creation and distribution of this "viral spec ad".]
Yet, as you may have already guessed, the spot's creators, Lee and Dan are now represented as directors by a major commercial production agency.
If you want to see other people's spec work or submit your own, check out The Spec Spot and Group 101 Spots.
Posted 04 July 2005 - 01:10 PM
Thanks again, I really appreciate it.
Posted 05 July 2005 - 03:45 PM
Using a Nike trademark in a spec spot is along the same caliber as using one in a home video. Spec work should never be done in vain, but you should also realize that they won't eve air. If you haven't ever done spec work, you can't get real work, and that's just the catch 22. Once your spec spots are done, you just show them to producers and production companies. In some cases, I've heard of people sending spec spots to companies in the hopes that they will be purchased, but it's much easier to get work by showing off your talent to producers, not agencies.
Good luck with your nike spot.
Posted 05 July 2005 - 05:45 PM
Posted 07 July 2005 - 09:48 PM
Posted 07 July 2005 - 10:17 PM
Edited by bob1dp, 07 July 2005 - 10:17 PM.