Assistant Director – 3 spots

Everyone on these Super Bowl-themed Digiorno Pizza branded content videos was a joy to work with, EXCEPT FOR THE PIZZA.  Pizza is a DIVA.  It’s only photogenic for a minuscule window of time once it’s cooked, so we rehearsed the lines, finished blocking, tweaked the art and lights, everything… AND THEN bring in the pizza for it’s closeup.

Aside from the pizza, we had 5 principal actors and 8 background players that we constantly moved around and re-grouped to create a busy and fun atmosphere in the party scenes. It was tons of fun working with our talented cast and watching our Director Sam Wiener get great performances out of UCB’s top comics and some promising newcomers.

I was brought on to help plan and run this production when Todd Bieber, UCB Comedy’s Creative Director, recommended me to the wonderful producer Grace Leeson.  Todd directed the UCB Comedy Web Series “Pursuit of Sexiness” with Sasheer Zamata and Nicole Byer that I AD’d and Produced.

We shot all three episodes back to back in one day. Here are the other two:

Coach Pep Talk Speech

Party Quarter Back

Blocking, rearranging props and furniture, and resetting makeup and wardrobe (which sometimes meant bean dip and body paint) was no easy feat but our team moved fast and kept up the pace required to get it all in the can.  We moved combined setups and thought hard about camera placement to get the maximum amount of dynamic coverage on a single relatively small stage.

Our director Sam Wiener had a great rapport with our DP Phil Russell.  They came up with great shots and gags to tell our jam-packed stories in real quick episodes, and it was satisfying getting it all done in quick succession, one great setup after another.  By prepping the art and most of the lighting in the studio a day before, we were able to do a lot with just a few tweaks throughout the shoot with our crack Art Department and PA Army close by at all times.  Even with all that we planned in our jam packed schedule and all the various takes and options everyone wanted to try, we ended exactly on time with a very happy client.