To celebrate inspiring women working in the fields of law, medicine, and crime, Dove recently teamed up with Mindshare for this years’ empowering Sky Witness idents campaign. Creatively devised by Ogilvy UK and directed by Great Guns’ Giovanni Messner
, the spots explore the challenges women can face at work and the importance of feeling comfortable in their appearance.
Inspired by Sky Witness’ focus on medical, legal, and crime dramas, the eight idents feature women working in such fields, with professions ranging from police officers and detectives, lawyers and solicitors, to physiotherapists and sonographers. The 15-second spots avoid a traditional documentary approach, with director Giovanni Messner choosing to marry authentic and unscripted interviews with the control and planning of a more traditional shoot. As a result, the final idents – which see the women discuss their jobs and the impact their appearance has had on their professional lives – reflect a more narrative film-style approach, even with a short run time.
Great Guns chose to work with casting director Anna Stark who worked tirelessly to source the real life women featured in the campaign, with the team then having to narrow down the selection to the final eight subjects.
Speaking of the process, Giovanni Messner comments: “I was in LA while initial casting took place in London, so had multiple one-on-one video callbacks with our top choices to dive into their stories and explore how we could bring those to life. It was not only about who had a great story, but about what stories could be told with such short and visual execution.”
The team had two days to shoot the eight idents, working at a fast pace to handle a number of moving pieces. Knowing they’d need as much time as possible with each subject, Giovanni searched across London for locations that could work for multiple stories. After settling on one location per day, the team dressed and built what was needed on each site, working around the cast’s busy work schedules and the short daylight hours of winter.
Giovanni adds: “I’m so thankful I had such a great team, and I have so many highlights from working on this campaign. I loved interviewing all the subjects and hearing everything they had to say – it really helped me workshop how to distil such varied and complex ideas into brief moments. I also loved showing the cast the final cuts of their films. They were all serious professionals and most of them had never done anything media or film related. I’d like to think we made them feel proud to be involved.”