WE’VE BEEN KEEPING A SECRET…
For months, we’ve been working tirelessly on a top-secret project unlike anything we’ve done before. And now, it’s finally out to the public! We’re so excited to announce our collaborative effort with LA director Richard Farmer on a music video for BRONCHO the band, featuring their new song ‘Big City Boys’! There were so many things that excited us about this project. Creatively speaking, music videos are always a blast to shoot. But what sets this project apart is that had the privilege of working with producers from Apple! Yes, you read that right. Apple, the company that makes billions off their iconic electronic devices, reached out to Retrospec’s owner Jason Burks and asked if we wanted to collaborate with them for their #ShotoniPhone campaign! Of course, we said yes.
So who is BRONCHO?
BRONCHO is an indie rock band based out of Oklahoma. Their newest album, Bad Behavior, just dropped this year with 10 songs.
We had about a month’s notice to prepare for this shoot and start thinking through all the details. We had to coordinate everything from medics to fire department to police to security guards on sight. We also had to coordinate drivers for the cars that made an appearance in the shoot, including a Lamborghini and a Maserati.
Nathan Groves, the Producer on this shoot, looked at everything down to the last detail to make sure we had everything we needed to pull this thing off. From power, heaters (it was cold that night!), and rain ponchos, all the way down to snacks and water for the talent. Nathan made sure that everyone and everything was placed in the right spot to execute in the most efficient way.
Our entire crew came out to help on this project, and we pulled in assistance from several other departments to help this video come into fruition. In total there were approximately 70 people involved in this production, including pre/post production efforts.
The Audition Process
Auditions for talent were held at the Retrospec studio on two full days the week before the shoot. Richard Farmer (Director) and Brandon Forbes (Producer) sat in while roughly 40 girls auditioned for the role of either Rocker or Fashionista. Farmer and Forbes narrowed their choices down to 14 Rockers & 14 Fashionistas and casted lead roles for each side.
Rehearsals For Talent
On the day before the shoot, all talent met at the Retrospec studio to go over the game plan for shooting day. Todd Whetsel, our fight choreographer, was brought in to give everyone safety pointers and a few different pieces of choreography that they could use in the fighting scene. Everyone practiced in couples for an hour or so and then they regrouped to go over choreography for the fight scene itself. After everyone felt good about where they were with the choreo, Madi pulled everyone aside to talk about wardrobe options.
The wardrobe for the entire shoot was taken on by Madi, who came up with ideas for outfits, sourced the clothes, and made sure everyone had what they needed at the shoot itself.
We had 6 makeup artists working on shoot day to make sure that 14 Rockers and 14 Fashionistas looked their best. They did have an inspiration board to refer to, but really, creativity ran wild and each girl ended up with a beautifully unique hair/makeup look.
The Day Of...
The day of the shoot started around 10:30am with Crew Call at the studio. Call time for hair/makeup and leads was at noon. We shot the band first, and then the opening car scene. The whole crew stopped for a late lunch around 2pm (we had really good mexican food catered in), and by the time we got to the fight scene, we were two hours behind. But Jason was positive that we could move through it quickly because we had three iPhone cameras running at the same time. The shoot ended around midnight when we finally wrapped! The last grip trucks left around 2:30am.
We actually had to change our idea for location a few days before the shoot due to some gloomy weather that was going to put a damper on the whole shoot (no pun intended). It was pouring rain the whole first half of the shooting day. Luckily, the warehouse we scouted ahead of time had a huge open interior that ended up being the perfect location for the Rockers’ hangout, so we actually shot the whole video inside the warehouse.
Jason Burks, Directory of Photography, was a little wary about shooting on an iPhone since he’s used to filming with top of the line camera equipment.
Overall the iPhone XS exceeded all of our expectation… and that’s saying a lot coming from a production company.
We also had a behind the scenes photographer capturing portraits in “Portrait Mode” and with the new editing capabilities on the XS, specifically the aperture tool, the photo results were… well, take a look! Every photo below was #ShotoniPhone.
Post Production: Editor Josh Franks talks about the editing process
“As an editor, it was a big win for me to get to be on set. It made it a little bit easier once I got into the editing suite to dissect everything that I’d been given. Having Richard there for 2 weeks was also good for a project of this size. It was a really cool experience as an editor with the director. That was the first time I’ve ever had a director sit in my office for 2 weeks. We developed a really strong friendship and a great working relationship. He’s worked with so many incredible people, and it’s cool for us because that opens doors for us.
When we showed the people at Apple our director’s cut, they were blown away. In their exact words, it was “f***ing badass.” They couldn’t believe that we were able to pull that off. It exceeded all their expectations. And that was the best thing for me as an editor to hear from someone who’s obviously worked on big projects. They also said that Adam’s behind the scenes videos were some of the best they’ve seen for Apple, which is huge! And that right there told me that a) we have the right people in place here, and b) we are only limited by what gets in our own way. It just goes to show that we can do anything, right here in Tulsa.
We had to hurdle a few challenges before the final product was sent out. When the edit came back from Apple’s legal team, they had to request a few changes that involved huge chunks of our content to be taken out. They wanted us to scale down the fight scene, and to eliminate all smoking. This was not ideal considering nearly every Rocker had a cigarette in her hand at all times. It was a little deflating to realize that I was going to have to chop away at a really solid video, but I had to look at it in a different way, that people who have never seen the first edit won’t know what they’re missing. And as long as the story still made sense in the end, that’s a good thing.
I spent 60-65 hours editing the music video itself. Richard was heavily involved in the editing process for the two weeks following the shoot, working closely with me to make sure all the right cuts made it in. Overall I am really happy with how the edit turned out.”
Q and A with Director Richard Farmer
Q: How did this project come up for you?
A: “I was on tour with another rock band called the Distillers when I met Broncho. I was excited because I was a huge fan of their first album, and I hoped to make some good connections. They told me they were finishing up a new album and I said hey! Let me know if I can ever produce something for you!
I picked Big City Boys which was my first favorite, which was also one of the songs that Apple wanted to get behind. I came up with the initial idea because of a conversation I had with Penny, the base players. I was asking her what their vision was for the music video. She told me, “Whatever it is, we don’t want any boys in the video!” That was the only direction I had to go off of, but that really got my creative wheels turning and I started to come up with a concept for the video.”
Q: What was it like to work with Retrospec Films in Tulsa?
A: “Working with the Retrospec crew was amazing. I live in LA and work with some great people who will do anything I say. I have contacts all over the world. But for this video specifically, I wanted to work in my home state. So I started doing some research on film companies in Oklahoma, and went through every production company online. I picked Retrospec as my first call. Jason was totally into the whole idea from the very beginning, which was exciting for me. I was a little overwhelmed with everything that had to be done -- from the video itself to behind the scenes footage to photography -- but from that first meeting with the whole team, I felt totally at home. I could see how talented and eager everyone was, and that made me even more excited that I chose Retrospec Films. As I got to know everyone more it almost became like working with family. They exceeded all expectations. It was a dream to me.”
Q: What was it like being on set on the day of the shoot?
A: “That was the best part. I live for being on set. It’s where the magic happens. When I’m directing it’s really important for me to have people that are fun to work with and also as enthusiastic as I am. And everyone at Retrospec worked so hard, with a smile on their face. It was a joy to experience the talent and soul of the company happening right in front of me. It was an exciting day, there were a lot of challenges, but we smashed through them as a team.”
Q: What was it like to be a part of the editorial process?
A: “Everyone saw the vision, even before the video was made. They saw what it took to create the full story that I had in my head. Franks kind of masterminded it, he brought in an element of the story that got us to this emotional place that the it really needed. It was a great story, but he took it to excellence. It was so cool to see him work. It was like watching a DJ at a party, blowing your mind. “
Q: Any final thoughts?
A: “I want to ring the bell to the world to let everyone know that this happening right here in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I can’t wait to work with them again! They’re like family to me now.”
Director - Richard Farmer
Producer - Nathan Groves
Director of Photography - Jason Burks
1st AD/ Co-Producer - Brandon Forbes
1st AC / Cinematographer - Jacob Hightower
2nd AC / Cinematographer - Adam Vigil
Gaffer - Jeremy Smart
Key Grip - Scott Sunday
Grip - Matt Patterson
Wardrobe - Madi Dettor
Vehicles - Joe Wright
Production Assistant - Fox Scoufos
Production Assistant - Alex Turner
Production Assistant - Callyn Francisco
Talent Wrangler - Kristen Forbes
Talent Wrangler - Casey Tackett
Behind The Scenes Photographer / Props - Laci Schwoegler
Behind The Scenes Cinematographer - Cole Puryear
Key Hair and Makeup - Kat Ashby
Hair & Makeup Assistant - Sofia Schmidt
Hair & Makeup Assistant - Joletta Johnson
Hair & Makeup Assistant - Haley Hayes
Hair & Makeup Assistant - Aubri Thompson
Hair & Makeup Assistant - Stevie Wood
Hair & Makeup Assistant - Jessica Ashworth
Craft Services - Chris Diamond
Editor Music Video - Josh Franks
Visual Effects / Colorist Music Video - Josh Tackett
Editor / Colorist Behind The Scenes - Adam Vigil
Sound Design - Josh Franks
Sound Design - The Audio Planet