Responses by Chris Booth, associate creative director/director, BBDO Toronto
Background: The brief was to create an emotional piece for Dr. Scholl’s based on the new, “Born to move” platform, which is all about the idea that nothing should stop us and that our happiest moments are spent in motion. The target audiences are active people who don’t necessarily see Dr. Scholl’s footcare products as being relevant to their lives.
Reasoning: The new tagline, “Born to Move” inspired the idea of telling a life story. This narrative approach enabled us to explore the beauty and importance of movement—both big and small—throughout all of our lives. The addition of ballet to her story helped add some more dynamic and expressive types of movement. And of course, I was fascinated by the idea of communicating this story and the emotion of her journey only by ever seeing her feet. This is what made the piece truly unique and ownable.
Challenges: The sheer number of shots that we had to get in a small window of time. There were 70 unique scenes, all with different lighting setups, cast, props and art direction. It was truly a monumental effort and much teamwork and flexibility to keep moving from one setup to the next, all within two and half days. This meant our preparation for the shoot was intense and involved quite a few spreadsheets!
Favorite details: Taking an iconic brand like Dr. Scholl’s into an emotional, storytelling space. In the past, Dr. Scholl’s stuck to functional and product focused advertising, so I knew this work could be something fresh that would allow consumers to connect to the brand in a completely different way.
Visual influences: I just had a beautiful baby girl seven months ago. Watching her figure out her world and begin to explore her own movement, as any parent will know, is a truly transformational experience. In fact, I was proud to use her in the two-minute film for the opening and closing shots. I love that this spot will become a beautiful reminder of her first small movements.
Anything new: Working with young kids was a great learning experience. You need to cater your direction to their ages, personalities and levels of comfort. We had some fun with different approaches to get the desired performances. Playing Simon Says, for example, worked really well with some of our youngest actresses.