bloody hand

I wanted this video to be as real as possible. I really punched the wall and that caused the various scabs from my Krabi trip to open up and stain the walls with blood. You’ll notice (if you have eyes like a hawk) that I was wearing a Band Aid during some of the scenes. smirk

It’s not that visible though since Cindy (who has just about anything in her condo) has one that is flesh colored. I only put it on coz it won’t stop bleeding and it’ll keep on dripping…like on her floor. Anyway, we had a lot of ideas for this actually:

Particleboard fake wall
This is something that you can actually punch through. Plywood would splinter while particleboard will have the same effect as the original video. Trust me, I’m from Sibu – Timber Town. :p

However, due to time and budget constraints we couldn’t do this.

Simulated bar fight
Actually the only reason we didn’t do this was due to logistical issues. We didn’t have a breakable bottle prop but it’s easy to use some blunt object to the same effect. However, it is highly unlikely that any bar would let us use their premises to do even simulated violence so we scrapped this. Sigh.

Self immolation
I REALLY WANTED TO DO THIS. I searched high and low for heptane – the only safe way to do this. Of course my definition of “safe” means there is a better than 10% likelihood of not getting third degree burns and a 50% chance of actually pulling it off. I read that heptane is used in anti-bacterial washes so I went to a lot of pharmacies until a kind pharmacist told me that it’s not used in Malaysia.

I called up several chemical suppliers but none of them will sell it to me. hmph

Heptane produces a warm flame just like gasoline (it’s also added to the petrol you pump at the gas station) instead of a sissy blue flame. The trick is NOT to douse yourself in it (that would send you to the hospital or the morgue) but to saturate a piece of mop (or something like that) with it and have someone run it over your body.

It will feel warm but it won’t burn you per se. It’s the vapors that burn in this scenario, not the liquid. However, you have to remove all your hair though so I shaved my pits and wanted to shave my head but alas, no heptane.

This video was actually shot over two weekends – the first weekend was spent doing the storyboard and we actually completed filming in 5 hours. We had another 2 ½ hour shoot the next weekend where we roped in strangers to help us and it turned out pretty good.

vitamin c

This is one of Cindy’s quirky notes around her house. I haven’t had my Vitamin C but I did get a good dose of Vitamin B from the Guinness that I drank. smirk

The Arthur’s Day Man of Action contest is still on. Just film a video and post the link to Guinness Malaysia’s Facebook. Each qualified entry will automatically win two passes to Arthur’s Day. w00t! I can’t wait! =D

Check out my original post.

Here’s the video again just in case you missed it.

nike script

I received the Nike advertorial pretty late in the game (pun intended) and scripted out two major scenes that I wanted to be in the writeup. The first was to be shot at an athletic wear/sports gear shop/active lifestyle outlet (I don’t even know what these places are called nowadays anymore ;)) to do the visualization (Read: camwhoring) aspects of the design contest.

script

Due to the limited number of such outlets in Sibu carrying Nike products, I decided to go to Lea Sports Center at Wisma Sanyan since I distinctively remember them having a Nike showcase while I was…er, getting adidas trainers earlier this year. ;)

cast crew

Thus, I geared up in my Nike ACG (All Climate Gear) windbreaker that I got in KK back in 2004 before climbing up Mt. Kinabalu (the highest mountain in South East Asia) for a bit of product placement pimpage and went out with Clare to do the photo shoot after work.

script 1

It should be noted that my tracksuit trousers were actually adidas and so were my trainers. It doesn’t look very obvious though so I thought it would pass The All Seeing Eye of Nike. ;) I do have Nike apparel in my current wardrobe – I remember getting a limited edition Nike tennis shoe during the Melbourne Open 2003 and have several other pairs of Nike trainers.

nike sweatshirt

There’s also a Nike sweatshirt with a hoodie that I got for chilly spring weather in Melbourne which has found a new role as a tattoo concealer for Casual Saturdays in the office. The dress code in my office does not allow for visible tattoos so I wear long sleeves every single workday – even on Saturdays. Yes, we do work half day on Saturday over here in Sarawak.

nike swoosh

We then proceeded to eat dinner at Sushi Tie and got the waitress to camwhore with me. I liked the deer-caught-in-headlights expression on her face. I’m going to caption this “Fear the Nike Swoosh“. :)

script 2

I proceeded to Delta Mall to meet up with Mary who was going to do the second major scene for the advertorial. I got a a lot of stares from people due to my athletic gear – I looked like I just finished a particularly grueling training session, but I kinda liked the attention. Heh! You’ve got to be able to take the double takes and stares if you’re a blogger going all out.

clare mary

Anyway, the second bit called for a video shoot in which I was getting heckled by two people while running laps around the mall. I initially planned for Mary to be doing the heckling but she introduced me to this guy who was PERFECT for the role. This is the take with only Mary doing the heckling:

I preferred the one with both of them doing the heckling so that’s the one I submitted for the advertorial. Mary is great as usual with her excellent repertoire of expressions and I loved the guy coz he pulled off the correct intonation and derisive-yet-humorous gesture in a single take. The video calls for me to be doing slow laps (basically a simulated slow run) while two people calls out:
“You run like a girl” and
“My grandmother runs faster than you”

script 3

The duo had great localization which was not in the script with Mary going “You run like a girl lah” and the guy going “Hey, my grandmother runs faster than you, okay?” which I really liked.

However, the best scene in the advertorial is, IMHO, one that I did not anticipate or script out. I was having my nicotine fix after finishing the photo shoot when I saw a security guard outside the mall doing the same. I remember the shoplifting scene for the Oreo advertorial and decided it would be fun to include the same theme into this one.

guard

I got the security guard to grab me while I was attempting to run and he was kind enough to comply. This was the best ending for the writeup since I figured I could put in a quirky caption before the contest regulations. It ended up being “…and design a lightweight pair of trainers so I can outrun mall security next time“. :)

Deleted Scenes:

ready alt

Ready…

set

Set…

go

Go…

I had also planned a Ready, Set, Go series of photos (this is the original trio) with me doing all three poses but decided to include just one (the Ready pose) due to fears of an unintentional overdose of camwhorage. ;)

The exclusion was a really good decision in hindsight coz it seems so cheesy now. Heh!

Bonus Features:

jay chou

The girls convinced me to do a Jay Chou pose. I’m not even sure why I did that, since I don’t even listen to his music!

This was one of the fastest advertorials that I’ve ever done with all the shoots completed in a day from script to editing. It was fun to go with the flow and see what scenes came out that wasn’t planned out. Cheers to Mary and Clare for helping out on this one!

script 1

The Oreo Twist Lick Dunk advertorial was one of the ones I really enjoyed doing. I enlisted the help of a couple of my friends and coworkers to participate in the script that I had written. It was more of a doodle of sorts with stick figures of scenes I had envisioned and a rough idea of the text.

cream o

The first problem came even before the photo shoot – there were no Oreo cookies to be found in the entire Sibu town. I searched every single supermarket and shopping mall and it seemed like there was a town-wide shortage of Oreo!

mary frustrated

I finally managed to find out the reason behind it – the manufacturer had recalled all the existing Oreo cookies and issued a memo to the retailers with instructions to take it off the shelves pending the arrival of the new packaging. The ship was supposed to have arrived but it got delayed at some port and no one had any idea of when it’ll actually come.

script 2

I thought about changing the script to a “Pepsi Test” writeup with people being blindfolded and asked to determine which cookie tastes better – Oreo or a local emulated version e.g. Cream-O but that would require Oreo biscuits as well. I was a bit concerned about the uncertainty surrounding the arrival of the shipment of Oreo to the Sibu market so I decided to take matters into my own hands.

poslaju

Thus, I called D, who was in KL at that time and staying at the Cititel hotel in Midvalley Megamall. She was kind enough to go to Jusco and get two packs of Oreo cookies and send it back via next-day courier service. D had to go in search of a box (so the Oreo wouldn’t get crushed) and hunt for a post office at the mall, so it’s thanks to her that I managed to meet the deadline. :)

mary stereo sad

In the meantime, I enlisted the help of Mary in my alternate scripts. I remember one of the alternate scripts was about not being able to find Oreo and wanted to title that post as “sixthseal.com and The Quest for the Holy Oreo“. The script went along the lines of being unable to get my hands on genuine Oreo cookies in Sibu and having to resort to having it sent from KL.

hb mcflurry 1

I even went to McDonald’s just to get a shot of their Oreo McFlurry, which was just about the only Oreo containing product in Sibu at that time.

hb mcflurry 2

This was the backup plan in case the package of Oreo didn’t arrive for reasons attributed to our fine postal service. ;)

oreo

Lady Luck was on my side though and the package containing Oreo from D arrived the very next day! Thus, I re-shot several of the scenes with the real Oreo. It took me two days to complete the Oreo shoot. One particular scene that stood out was the shoplifting scene.

stealing

I did the first one with Cream-O, a local biscuit “inspired” by Oreo, and I had serious reservations about submitting that since the client would obviously not want to see a competitor’s product in the photos. Cream-O looks almost like Oreo due to the blue packaging but I didn’t want to tarnish the advertorial by passing off another product as Oreo.

caught

Well, the reason this particular scene was memorable was due to one of my friend’s interaction with the clerk at a local supermarket. He has a really funny and sarcastic response during the Sibu Oreo Shortage (TM). We were at Ta Kiong and they haven’t received their shipment of Oreo as well, but one of the clerks said that there had Oreo biscuits and walked with us down the aisle and pointed to…Julie Stereo.

This prompted my wise-cracking friend to launch into a funny tirade against the poor girl.

Friend: Stereo? We said OREO not STEREO.
Clerk: Ya lah, Oreo. (points to Julie Stereo)
Friend: That’s not Oreo! How can you compare Oreo to Stereo? Do you compare a Mercedes to a Kancil? We wanted the original Nabisco Kraft Oreo.
Clerk: (speechless)

Anyway, we didn’t even know if the clerk understood English which was a bit of a mistake on our part. I walked in on Tuesday again to get some chocolates and the very same clerk called out to me and told me that my Oreo has arrived. She then proceeded to talk to a fellow clerk across the counter about getting “suan” (Hokkien for sarcastically teased) by my friend the other day.

clerk

In hindsight, it was really kinda funny. I apologized to her and told her we were only having a bit of fun, albeit at her expense. She was very nice about the entire thing though, so kudos to her for that. I got a DoubleStuf Oreo and the Peanut Butter and Chocolate Oreo to supplement my meager supply of Oreo from KL. I even got her to pose for a photo and we returned the next day to do a proper shot of the shoplifting scene with their ample supply of Oreo as the backdrop. :)

Deleted scenes:

sister

Reason: Product placement overkill. The pose with the Oreo is too fake.

shoplifting 1

Reason: The expression on my face wasn’t right. I didn’t look shocked enough – in fact, I look a little bit too aggressive.

shoplifting 2

Reason: Same as above. I look more irritated than shocked at being apprehended by a security guard for shoplifting. I needed the comical horror expression at being caught in the act.

Bonus features:

mary 1

mary 2

mary 3

I was delighted to find out that Mary was such a good model to work with. She has a wide repertoire of facial expressions. She can do sad, frustrated, angry, cute and happy when called to. She’s really a pleasure to work with and has been a great help to this project. Thanks Mary! :)

The funniest thing about this advertorial is that most of the shots were done using a single Oreo pack. I had to conserve my resources and had planned out which scenes needed the pack to be open and which ones didn’t. I was so stingy with the two packs of Oreo that consumption was strictly controlled even during the scenes except when absolutely necessary. Heh!

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