"Ownership"

This was shot during a tornado watch. I had hired a crew from Indianapolis to bring up big lights to make it look sunny because I knew we were expecting rain that day. But I had no idea there would be a tornado. The commercial called for several angles, but the creative director agreed with me that it would be more effective if we could do it in one shot, if possible. Well, by the time we were lit and the extras were in place and rehearsing, the wind started whipping up, and we were in danger of losing our lights. We had a couple of 4,000-watt HMIs (hydrargyrum medium-arc iodide lights) and a couple of 1,200-watt HMIs out of the windows, and it took everything the grips had to keep the HMIs from blowing over—not to mention the flags and nets on C-stands in front of the lights. I can only imagine what the grips were dealing with out there because I had my own concerns inside with the shoot.

Suffice it to say we had to break the shot into two pieces so we could get the lights down and still salvage the shoot. I think it still works. And I think I actually like it better with the cut. It puts a little emphasis on the card exchange, which is what the commercial's all about. You continually compromise on a film set, no matter what anyone tells you. But many times when a door closes, a window opens.