2007 Creativity Award Winner: Sony Bravia "Paint"

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It's likely not a coincidence that the Bravia brand name sounds like a play on the word "brave," given the kind of marketing risks Sony has taken to promote this particular television set. Fallon/London's follow-up to the splendid, Gold Lion-winning "Balls" proved as ambitious as its predecessor, lining up Jonathan Glazer to direct a fireworks-inspired display of paint splashes and spurts—70,000 liters worth— using a scary amount of ammo to explode them onto a sleepy block of flats in Glasgow, Scotland. But long before the spot's debut late last year, people were already talking, thanks to Sony's online drumroll to the event in the form of a blog on the Bravia website, featuring regular updates and tidbits about the production. Eager fans even helped to build anticipation with their own postings of pics and videos of the shoot on FlickR and Youtube. The production, which took 10 days and 500 hands to pull off, culminated in a daring dance of choreographed color set to Rossini's "The Thieving Magpie." Another version of the spot dispenses with the music for sound effects, allowing the paint to literally speak for itself.

Q&A with Fallon/London creative/partner Juan Cabral

How did you come up with this particular idea?

The original concept came about the same time as "Balls," to suddenly cover a boring building block with paint. With time, the script naturally evolved. Producing "Balls" had a great effect on the narrative and the way of shooting it–and of course the involvement of Jonathan Glazer.

What were the biggest challenges?

Doing it for real. It took three months of testing. We tested paint being detonated in many different ways to achieve what the film needed. And meanwhile trying to find the perfect location and the right choreography.

What did the client (David Patton) contribute to the creative process?

He bought into the illusion and let us push the idea to the point it was almost impossible to produce it. It takes a lot of confidence for clients to get to that stage.

Any interesting anecdotes?

What defines this film in my mind was the waiting—literally for days—to get just a minute of clear sky to capture the biggest shot. We had in front of us this colossal set up – a building completely rigged-up in explosives and bottle-bombs filled with paint. Completely surreal. All the cameras pointing at it, ready to go, a crew of 200 people and a neighborhood just sitting and waiting. It was mad. It felt a bit like Lost in La Mancha.
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