The history of our viral began at the start of 2012. Christian, Martin, and I were discussing additional marketing possibilities for our app. At some point, we had the idea of producing a spot. We quickly agreed that it should not be one of those self-shot amateur spots – in contrast to many other app and business software producers
After we put together our first ideas in the next few weeks, I started to draft the screenplay and storyboard. To me, the most exciting thing about such processes is seeing how the initial ideas actually develop. This also includes something inevitable: I discarded the first four versions of the screenplay and storyboard until finally I had the idea for the real estate agent Steve and the eccentric millionaire. Mrs. Hoover, an old, resolute lady with a few cliches. Staged here and there, a bit overdrawn. The figure made a good contrast to Steve and nevertheless it was important to me that she should be essentially sympathetic
An excerpt from my role description:
Mrs. Hoover (client)
Mrs Hoover is the last member of a wealthy industrial family.
She knows exactly what she wants and is demanding. She is exclusive and well dressed, well educated and quite a bit snobbish. But she can be very gentle as well. Mrs. Hoover has her own sense of humor and likes the fine things in life.
Most important to her: Her dogs.
Detailed physical description
Age: 55-75 distinguishing
Hair: blond/bright white, eyes: blue or green
Height: 158-160 cm, weight: 55-58 kg
What is the principal function of this character? Antagonist
The next step was to find an appropriate production company. We chose Martin Heyneke and Cyclon Films. Martin and his team quickly sent us suggestions for the location, the director, and the actors; Christian and I made a selection.
Blue sky and temperatures over 20 degrees – this is how the weather in one of the most beautiful places in the world greeted me: Capetown. "This place is magical!" – I know how often I used these words to describe Capetown during and after my trip.
Martin Heyneke, our Executive Producer, picked me up at the airport. We drove directly to Cyclon Films in the Old Biscuit Mill in Woodstock. A place full of creativity: small stores, local designers, craftsmen, and galleries. Martin and his employees ensured that I always felt at home and they informed me about the pre-production and the further procedure over the next few days. In the afternoon I met Daniel Bruce, our director, and David Leite, our producer, who had visited the locations we had selected.We spent the afternoon casting the actors for the two bodyguards for Mrs. Hoover. By the day of the shoot, a few things had to be planned and organized: We specified what the actors should wear and other details, and Daniel, David, and I met in my hotel to go through the screenplay again. We struck a few things here, added a few things there
On November 19, 2012 it was time: shooting day. Unfortunately this was the only day during these two weeks on which it rained. Aside from the fact that we had to clean the Bentley off several times, the rain didn't cause us any great problems. At 6:00 AM, the crew began preparing the location: spotlights were positioned, pumps carried, cables laid, and the street in front of the house partially blocked off. We began with the exterior shots, so that the art department and the technicians had time to prepare the house. Everything was planned in detail, such as pumping out the pool in order to prepare the "dog bed" with the pillows there later on. Nevertheless, Daniel was open to improvisation: "Why don't we just let the poodle run on the treadmill?" Done!
After a successful day, the filming wrapped up about 10 PM. A great effort by the entire team! Christian and I were very impressed by the way that a team of more than 40 people worked so efficiently yet so relaxed and with such focus. We finished out the shooting day on the waterfront. The last days in South Africa were very technical. In a studio outside of Capetown, we began to rework the film that had been shot. The final result was a 1'18" film in cinematic format.
With the finished viral and many wonderful memories, I flew back to Switzerlandon November 26, 2013.