high-risk filmmaking

Pro-bono ad assignments and independent films have much in common. Both are labors of love that enable the auteur (or creative director) to have some fun and occasionally risk life and limb.

It was in that spirit that Santa Ana, Calif., agency DGWB created a pro-bono campaign for next spring’s Newport Beach Film Festival. Using the tagline, “Movies made with passion. Not money,” the print work seeks to capture the lengths to which very low-budget moviemakers will go to realize their dream.

In one notable execution, art director Dave Hermanas wanted to illustrate how a cameraman might film a driver behind the wheel using nothing more than some rope. Keeping with the theme of the campaign, the shop’s director of TV spots, Rohitash Rao, was tied down to the hood of a pickup tooling down the road.

“We were casting mostly friends and figured, Why not use our director?” said Hermanas. “We wanted to show just how far people will go to make a film. He was a good sport about it, but, in truth, the pickup was only going about 2 miles per hour.”