Creativity 50 2011: Pelle Nilsson, Anders Wahlquist, Petter Westlund

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From left: B-Reel's Pelle Nilsson, Petter Westlund and Anders Wahlquist
From left: B-Reel's Pelle Nilsson, Petter Westlund and Anders Wahlquist

If you're wondering how far a production company can go to help agencies and marketers realize innovative brand ideas, the feats achieved by integrated production shop B-Reel might give you a clue. Founded in 1999 by Anders Wahlquist, Pelle Nilsson and Petter Westlund in Stockholm, the company earned the title of Creativity's 2010 Digital Production Company of the Year, based on first of a kind efforts like 180 L.A.'s Mitsubishi Live Drive, which allowed curious customers to test drive a real 2011 Outlander Sport on a real track in L.A.--from the comfort of their own keyboards. The company was also a key partner in the production of Chris Milk and Aaron Koblin's groundbreaking Wilderness Downtown interactive music video for Arcade Fire and Google Chrome.

Since then, B-Reel has moved onto even more impressive endeavors, including 3 Live shop, an e-commerce interface for Swedish telecom provider 3 Sweden that allows customers to interact with a real sales person on the web Minority Report-style. It also teamed with Lowe Brindfors on Magnum Pleasure Hunt, an online advergame that saw a girl travel across the internet collecting bonbons and playing with other brands along the way. In the works are new projects for Google and a web app that visualizes what news stories are getting the most play across the social media spectrum.

How do you define creativity?
AW: Pushing things forward. And the side effects are great. The rush, the euphoric sensation you get when you're in a room with your colleagues, trying to break that seemingly unbreakable problem. And then suddenly somebody says something, firing a chain reaction of excitement and inspiration through the room, showing a path forward for overcoming the obstacle. It's awesome.

What are your thoughts on risk-taking, when it comes to creative work? How much does risk taking factor into the work you create today?
PN: It is a common element in the work we do. We want to do stuff that hasn't been done before, and then there's going to be risks. But over time, you somehow get experienced at taking risks, building up tangible systems and processes as well as an instinct for deal better with unknown factors.

What is the biggest creativity killer?
AW: Bureaucracy.

What are you most inspired by?
PW: The people we work with.

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