I was happy to get a call from BMW in May to create a new campaign for the BMW 1 Series. It's our 10th project for BMW in the past 5 years, so it's a little bit of a milestone! We needed something summer-y, something that would be appealing to the majority female target audience, something that would be instantly catchy on social media, and we needed to show off the sunroof, the automatic rear door, the premium stereo system, the keyless entry, and the overall snappy design.
We came up with a general concept and a script, and after a little back and forth, the plan was confirmed, and we started our preparation. We arrange to shoot at LAPCC, a large soundstage we often shoot at in Taipei, and did casting for our model. In the end, we decided on Yuen.
Next we fleshed out our storyboard, including the angles and timing of each shot. We had limited time and budget for this commercial, including limited postproduction time, so we didn't want to rely too heavily on animation. We decided on including one key sequence that needed compositing work in post. We decided on an overall color palette for the commercial, which would work well with the actual color of the car, stay on tone for the global campaign, and keep a poppy summer vibe.
We did a full day at the studio on June 1, including video shooting for the 16:9 main commercial, as well as some extra shots for 9:16 vertical versions, and also photos. We shot with a Red V-Raptor and Tokina Vista lenses, and mostly using Aputure lighting. Only the smallest studio was available, which made lighting challenging, but with the help of our gaffer A-Zhe, we figured it out! Long time collaborator Steven Vigar held down the still photography for the day, and was super happy with the performance of his new Nikon Z9.
After color grading, the shots really started to pop!
Here's a look at the before/after of the grading, from raw file to finished shot.
Here is a quick breakdown of the animated sequence. We composited two shots together, and added some clouds to make the key sequence.
and here are some GIFs of a few key shots:
Here is the final long-version video::
We made 4 different vertical videos, primarily for Instagram use, highlighting some important features of the car. Here is one: