Is it me… or should you dress for success on film sets?
I never travel light. People laugh at my luggage. Producers have been known to balk at my baggage. I can take it, I like to be prepared: warm feet = happy shooting. So let’s talk clothes, but first…
I’m delighted to join froehlich-management who will be replacing the folks at Cream. Annex is still my home in the UK and if you fancy flying south to avoid the winter blues pack your shorts and join me at Grinder in Cape Town. Talking shorts…
Remember how hot it was this summer? 30’ degrees in the shade. Perfect weather to shoot table top for Philips. Camera, lights… Phantom! As everyone knows, the higher the frame rate the bigger the lights. As temperatures soared I suddenly remembered for once, I'd packed “light” exchanging shorts for a more dignified look. Bad move. Like Albert Brookes in Broadcast News, I wasn't looking pretty.
So how do you combine style with functionality? How do you make sure that you don’t look like a geriatric hiker on route to the National Trust tea rooms? The camera department get it right – part military, they can unzip at will. For PA's it's all about the cut of your jib. And producers… rightly or wrongly I always listen to producers, because producers check the weather.
Then again, who can predict the weather, especially in the UK. This summer filming wheat fields for Kellogg's we experienced four seasons in a day, now that’s a sizable overnight bag. This time I hadn't travelled light and ended up costuming most of the crew.
Sadly last week I couldn't be so smug. Hanging off the back of a low loader my trusted DOP reveled in the definition of an expression involving 'brass' and 'monkeys'. With my teeth chattering I could only dream of my beloved Canada Goose at home in the wardrobe as “surely it won’t be that cold”…
So how exactly do you dress for success on a film set? Personally, from now on, I’m going to go back to my old motto “pack everything and handle the laughter”.
My Russian friends have got it down to a fine art. They know the true meaning of getting caught out in the cold. It’s less a case of 'dignity always dignity' and more 'layers always layers'. They snigger at waterproofs using disposable macks but when it comes to winter hardware their brands have history. When it’s minus 20 in the shade you better be sure your goose in real and not a chicken is disguise.
The film business is a tribe, we kind of follow our own fashion - t-shirts from last exit to nowhere, Carhartt to blend in, and if you’re going to wear a baseball cap it better look like you stole it from a truck driver somewhere in Middle America.
So as the temperature drops and your wardrobe changes it's time to whip up a stew with your new Philips blender. Check out my latest spot to see how this brilliant device makes light work of even the toughest tasks. I've already cooked pumpkin soup, homemade pesto and some serious arrabiata. God I love cooking.
Coming up in the next few months viral films for Philips, a charming new online spot for Kellogg’s and an Ecosport commercial for our friends at Ford. Until next time, dress for success!