“Domestic Violence” and “Child Poverty” videos for Mission Australia’s 2016 Winter Appeal, with iSentia
Mission Australia work to reduce homelessness and strengthen communities across Australia, by offering victim support, helping people secure jobs, receive an education, find housing and develop important life skills.
The 2016 Winter Appeal by Mission Australia was set up to attract donations to help the thousands of families and children who have lost their homes because of domestic violence or another crisis – frightened and desperate they sleep wherever they can, often in places that are unsafe or unliveable.
Mission Australia commissioned media intelligence agency iSentia to manage the marketing and comms for this project. Part of the strategy was to create impacting television commercials to provoke an emotional, empathetic and shocking response from the viewer. TEN ALPHAS were engaged to direct and provide the production crew for the two videos – “Domestic Violence” and “Child Poverty” – based on the creative provided by iSentia.
THE CHALLENGES AND SOLUTIONS
The creative required a first person perspective and that both video were done in just one shot.
In order to get the first person perspective we used a helmet cam. The helmet used was cumbersome and heavy (as the camera required a counterweight for stability). The actress and child actor could therefore only wear the helmet for about 10minutes at a time.
Filming the videos in one take, using the head-cam, and filming in very enclosed spaces, meant that we had to carefully and thoroughly block and rehearse each video.
Due to the mobility of the head-cam, we couldn’t have a direct feed from the camera to a monitor for reviewing, so we had to do several takes and then review.
Another tricky technical element was that both videos start with the talent looking in a mirror. To film this with the head-cam would mean that the camera would be visible in the reflection. We therefore shot the reverse (with the actor performing without the head-cam) then superimposed this filmed image onto the mirror.
Lastly, this project required the actors to portray extremely emotional scenarios – we had to be very considerate of this fact, particularly in regards to the younger talent.
The 2016 Winter appeal videos were extremely successful for Mission Australia. Thanks to the quality of the still and moving image outputs, and a comprehensive media spend that extended to multiple online platforms and print outlets such bus shelters and bill boards.
At time of writing, the campaign had already raised a quarter of a million dollars, with the “Domestic Violence” video at 15,000 views and the “Child Poverty” at 83,000 views.
Executive Producer and Creative Director: Stuart Hipwell
Producer: Maria Bello
Director: Nick Bolton
Director of Photography: Nathaniel T Jackson
Camera operator: Christiaan Blok
Sound operator: Jules Ambroisine
Photographer: James Green
Make up Artist Nicolle Adrichem and Lauren Hoddinott
Green screen studio: Corpcast Productions
Edited by iSentia
Mother: Verna McClune
Father: Leighton Sharpe
Daughter: Lailah Sheridan