It all started on a Thursday afternoon with a sliiiiiightly frenetic call from our friends over at cleandesign:
Three Post: “You want us to produce a video for Lenovo? Awesome! When do we get started”
cleandesign: “Yeah. It’s a fun project, but with a tight turnaround. We need it done by next Thursday. As in a week from today. Are you guys up for it?”
Three Post: (Slight pause) “Let’s do this!”
After a quick debrief meeting with the Lenovo team, we learned our challenge was to produce an intro video for Lenovo America’s Sales & Support Kickoff & Global Site Kickoff. In the past, videos featured Lenovo’s Vice President and General Manager, Dilip Bhatia, performing over-the-top stunts.
This year, Dilip’s wild idea was to jump from a plane and parachute down through downtown Raleigh – all the way to the front door of the Raleigh Convention Center. While this seems completely crazy, the theme for this year’s conference was “Be Amazing,” so this stunt couldn’t be perceived as average. Not even close. Although Dilip had was no stranger to skydiving – his last jump had been over 15 years ago, requiring him to do a tandem jump. This meant Three Post’s challenge was to make it look as if Dilip was leaping out of the plane alone and landing on a strategically placed bullseye outside the convention center. Piece of cake, right? Not exactly. This obviously involved some serious creative problem solving. Luckily, Three Post was up to the challenge (per usual).
Although Dilip was replaced by a stuntman for the actual introduction video, he was inspired to take his own advice and “do something amazing” while at Triangle Skydiving Center. Since Dilip was already suited-up, he figured he’d go ahead and jump. Dilip, a NC State University alum can be seen flashing the wolfpack hand gestures as he falls through the sky.
The folks over at Triangle Skydiving Center really helped us out in capturing the skydiving footage. After we filmed the footage of Dilip suiting up, Don and Greg took over with the aerial shots. Don shot footage of Greg, who was our skydiving stand-in for Dilip. With our first production obstacle solved, we now faced hurdle number two – figuring out how to make it look as if Dilip was landing at the Raleigh Convention Center.
To do this, we reached out to POV Productions for their expertise with quad-copter GoPro video. Utilizing a quad-copter allowed us to capture aerial footage above downtown Raleigh that would mimic Dilip’s POV view as he descends. Hurdle number two? Check.
With the production now under our belts, it was time to move into post-production. Luckily, once we got behind the computer, the only challenge we faced was time. And really, that was nothing a cup o’joe couldn’t solve. We hunkered down and worked our post-production magic to deliver the finished product – on time and on budget. And with an epic Three Post team high-five.
Sure – projects with tight schedules can be stressful. But despite the obvious difficulties in taking on these types of projects, we actually kinda love them. There’s a huge sense of satisfaction in testing ourselves by taking on and overcoming seemingly impossible circumstances. These type of projects force us to think and act nimbly and find creative ways to produce high-quality work despite challenging conditions.
One thing we didn’t completely master? Using the quad-copter. Check out our behind the scenes video to see how this project came together. And why we’ll never be allowed near a quad-copter again.