New York/LA: March 29th, 2011: Charged Studios, the award-winning production company, once again met the challenge of creating an attention-getting national TV spot for MoveOn.org, and turning it around in time to make waves in the middle of a current national political debate. Working on a tight schedule, their team took the live-action national commercial, 'We Won't Go Back,' from script through the design, set construction and production in 36 hours, accommodating the limited availability of star talent with a shoot in LA the next day. Then the one-stop New York-based company edited and color corrected the commercial, created the sound design and original music and delivered the final spot 48-hours later. Lisa Edelstein, (Dr. Cuddy on the Emmy Award winning series, “House,”) has strong personal opinions about the current Republican congressional campaign to redefine the legal definition of rape, which would lead to the de-funding of Planned Parenthood and pave the way for women loosing the right to choose. So when MoveOn.org creative director, Laura Dawn, asked Edelstein to lend her talent to a spot dedicated to raising awareness of this issue, the actress was immediately aboard. However, the issue would be going before congress in less than a week, and Edelstein’s work schedule left her with only the following day free to shoot spot in Los Angeles. Charged Studio’s lead producer Mike Landry took the reins of the project in NYC, and focused on tackling the biggest challenge it presented, which was creating the 1950’s set that would best serve the script. During the flight from New York to LA he kept in touch with the crew as they were building a mid-century style hallway with an ominous door at the end of it. The set was constructed at Drop Shop in LA with Pablo Sison and Philip Godwin from their art department overseeing the build. MoveOn’s Laura Dawn took the lead on scripting the spot, and then ideas began to fly back and forth between her and Charged Studios’ executive producer/director of production, Adam Pierce. He suggested incorporating the hanger symbol, a classic icon in the pro-choice movement, and Laura Dawn ran with that in dramatic fashion. Her instinct was that the action should build as the camera floats down the hallway with the actress. She posited that the reaction from the audience should be dread…at the thought of forcing women back into these horrifying situations. “We focused on creating a look that was simplistic, yet artful and beautiful,” noted Landry. “The message in the script was compelling and the visuals were designed to serve as a way to reinforce it, without distracting from it or overpowering it.” The spot opens with Edelstein’s back to the camera, wearing a spot-on 50’s cocktail dress, as she begins to slowly walk the length of the hallway towards the door as her voiceover brings home the spot’s message. “Only decades ago women suffered through horrifying back-alley abortions or used dangerous methods when they had no other recourse. So when the Republican Party launched an all-out assault on women’s heath pushing bills to limit access to vital services we had to ask….” As Edelstein poses the question: “Why is the GOP trying to send women back to the back alley?” she opens the door, revealing a dark void and a single, stark, hanger. Daron Murphy once again struck the perfect chord with his original music and sound design, lending just the right emotional import to the proceedings. Andy Harmon honed in the color correction to create a stylized color pallet. Charged’s dramatic, thought-provoking spot not only effectively raises viewers’ awareness but various media outlets integrated the commercial into their coverage of the political issue. (MSNBC featured the spot in a segment dedicated a segment to the topic, as did Salon and a number of other outlets (see links below). “MoveOn.org is a political action committee and they need to respond quickly and we are always up for the challenge of a quick turnaround” notes Pierce, owner of the 10-year old creative, production, and animation studio. “Over the years, Charged has developed a strong relationship with clients like MoveOn, that allows us to jump in and bring your creative to life quickly and without compromising style or quality” adds Pierce. Charged Studios’ producer Mike Landry notes, “This spot reminds me a bit of “Track Meet,” a campaign we produced for MoveOn last year featuring Heather Graham. They both have signature looks that support a strong message. Perhaps it’s because they were both directed by Yaniv Raz and produced and creative directed by the same team. We’ve reached a short hand with each other that is able to turn out a spot like this in 36 hours, with hundreds of thousands of dollars in earned media for MoveOn as a result. ” . MoveOn’s media strategy is to create spots that produce earned media so their message reaches beyond their base. “We Won’t Go Back” was covered by all major networks, elevating the issue to a topic of national discussion within 48 hours of the ad’s release.
Category: National Television Spot /Live-Action Title + Length: "We Won’t Go Back" Length: 30-seconds Link to Spot: http://www.charged.com/featured/moveon Client: MoveOn: Creative Director/Writer: Laura Dawn Production Company: Charged Studios (www.charged.com) Producer: Mike Landry Director: Yaniv Raz Director of Photography: Pierluigi Malavasi Executive Producer: Adam Pierce Associate Producer: Andy Harmon Color Correction: Andy Harmon Editor: Steve Centrachio Music + Sound Company: Gowanus Sound Initiative Composer: Daron Murphy Sound Stage: Drop Shop Art Dept: Pablo Sison, Philip Godwin