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In the summer of 2022 the OKC-based digital agency Saxum approached us to work on a new campaign for the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health called “Own Your Power.” The campaign was focused on overall mental health in teens with a portion of the videos addressing vaping and marijuana cessation to be broadcast on Tik-Tok and social media platforms. We were very excited to work on a project that had the opportunity to do some good for teens in our state that had been hit particularly hard during the pandemic.
Once the project had been greenlit by creative director Jerryd Clinton and his team it was decided that we would go into production as quickly as possible based on a very tight delivery schedule.
It was an ambitious series of spots: a :60 with multiple cutdowns, and a large number of additional :15 and :6 second spots to be shot alongside additional footage to create a large number of “remixes” or alternate scenarios alongside the main piece.
Casting quickly became one of the biggest challenges. We wanted 15-20 teens that captured the diversity and authenticity of real Oklahomans with individual styles, looks body types, abilities, and personalities encouraged. We worked with Friehofer Casting and were able to in a very short amount of time get a really talented cast put together.
Because of the scale and turnaround time of the campaign, there were some new faces on the production team that we had a really great time working with. Stylistically we were very excited to attempt something moody in the vein of Euphoria while not talking down to our audience. DP Spencer Sakurai nailed the look and after some discussions and based on our very tight shooting schedule, we decided that most of the spots would be shot on a gimble and that wherever possible we would try to make our camera moves as dynamic as possible.
Our team worked hard to keep us on schedule for what were four very long days with a lot of locations, the hottest days of the summer, and a large group of talent that was also doubling as background when they weren’t the heroes of the scenes.
Costume Designer Sarah Blain was brought in to manage the huge task of creating all the unique looks, each of our teens sometimes had three or four outfit changes and we wanted to ensure we nailed the current times' flavor.
Additionally, there was a “zoom” through one phone into another teen's photo that starts off the spot which was particularly challenging. We worked with our frequent graphics collaborator Jason Yang to handle tracking and the effect itself.
Production Designer Cheyenne Scarborough worked wonders with a very small budget to transform a few Airbnb’s into believable and unique interiors for our characters.
Shot over four days in Tulsa, the Own Your Power campaign wrapped on schedule and immediately went into post. We’re very proud of how these spots came together.
Matt Leach - Director / Producer
Jeremy Charles - Director / Producer
Brooke Allen - Producer
Mike Roque - Associate Producer
Savannah Edwards - Associate Producer
Robert Bogert - 2nd Assistant Director
Spencer Sakurai - Director of Photography/A Camera Operator
Corey Robinson of Wooley Studio - Gaffer
Nick Buttram - Camera Assistant
Kyle Martindale - Key Grip
Paul Hillburn - Grip
Viet Nguyen - Associate Producer / DIT / SWING
Mateo Galindo - Production Sound Mixer
Josiah Jones - Production Assistant
Halle Frieden - Production Assistant
Jonathan Burkhart - Photographer
Beth Bey - Hair and Make-Up Artist
Tracey Anderson - Hair and Make-Up Artist
Sarah Blain - Wardrobe
Cheyenne Scarborough -Art Director / Set Decorator
Leo Richardson - Location Scout
Jerryd Clinton - SAXUM AGENCY - Creative director
John Salame - SAXUM AGENCY - Senior Art Director
Cara Rich - Motion Designer
Shauna Peters - Associate Account Director
Jack Copeland - Editor
Viet Nguyen - Editor
Jason Yang - VFX
Kawnar - Original Music
Ryan Weaver - Post Sound Mixing
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