The brand film was launched in the United States to influencers, players and fans on social and sports platforms by another South African agency, HaveYouHeard. The film documents the story of a father and daughter who have polarising views on just about every major issue currently defining American politics.
But, as the story unfolds, the film depicts that some things are more important than ideological differences, such as the characters' love of basketball and the weekly ritual of going to games together.
Shot in Brooklyn and Queens in New York City, the film holds multiple references to basketball.
"The United States right now is so divided — so fractured — that it sometimes feels its citizens will never find common ground. Then you come across a story like this and you realise that sport can show us the way back to one another," says Intrepid Fox's executive creative director and copywriter Gavin Whitfield.
"We were aware of a viral piece of work for Scouts that had been doing the rounds and had about 6-million YouTube views," says Darren Wall, SportsHosts's co-founder. "Something about it really touched a nerve with us and we knew we wanted to make work like that. By a stroke of luck, a strategist on our team happens to be a South African and knew the guys who made it."
"A few emails and phone calls later, and Whitfield was pitching a number of ideas to the SportsHosts executives. It was a challenge as the team is spread between New York, Los Angeles, Denver, Connecticut and Melbourne," adds Wall.
"So, finding a time that made sense for everyone was nearly impossible. But, once we figured out who was doing the 'red eye' call, it was plain sailing. The team really let Intrepid Fox lead them creatively," says Wall.
Further increasing the South African connection was:
- director Gregg Bailey of Figment Films
- Neil Solomon, a producer based in Washington DC working for People’s Television Inc, and
- Kabeer Shaik, an award-winning DOP in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
"Once we had shot the footage, we brought it back to South Africa so that we could edit with Anthony Lee Martin at Me & My Friends. We mixed the audio at Pressure Cooker Studios and finished the online at Deliverance Post with SFX by Graeme Armstrong, grade by Terry Simpson and titles from Dylan Wrankmore," says Bailey. "All this made the project extremely cost-effective, without sacrificing anything in front of the camera."
"We had a year to research and rewrite it and rewrite it," says Whitfield. "Also, on a fundamental level, we've had our own experience of sport uniting those who are seemingly at odds with one another."
"The 1995 Rugby World Cup, 2010 FIFA World cup and, more recently, what happened in Japan gave us a universal understanding of the material and specifically the importance of sport in healing divisions. Then, of course, we did a lot of research into the policy platforms that are dividing American politics right now," adds Whitfield.
The film was launched during the March Democratic Primaries, which coincide with NBA's busiest period. "We teamed up with the Cape Town office of HaveYouHeard to seed the content in the right place, and they identified March as the biggest month for both politics and basketball," says Whitfield's creative partner Alan Cronje.
"Let's hope that everyone can see that it's possible to disagree on some things and still find space to enjoy being with one another. There are probably few things more important than that right now," concludes Whitfield. said Intrepid Fox’s Fox's Executive
For more information, visit www.haveyouheard.co.za
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