Your Shot: How Andreas Nilsson Wrangled Cardi B’s Prehensile Nails for Reebok
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The Biscuit Filmworks director explains (in his own special way) how he ‘nailed it’ in this oddball film for the sportswear brand
Reebok has a strong track record when it comes to delivering that special WTF factor. The British sportswear brand hit UK screens with the ineffable ‘Belly’s Gonna Get Ya’’ back in 2000 and this thread of weirdness has run through its marketing and reared its head every so often ever since, like in its collaboration with Palace Skateboards and Jonah Hillor the most brilliantly awkward dance-off ever depicted earlier this year. This time, as a last hurrah for the agency on the account, Venables Bell & Partners has outdone itself and delivered a film that’s hilarious, unnerving, stylish and baffling, all in one package. Starring rap phenomenon and cultural icon of the times we live in Cardi B, the film was directed by oddball Biscuit Filmworks director Andreas Nilsson and we’re honestly not sure if anyone could have delivered on such a unique script.
LBB’s Addison Capper couldn’t resist hitting up Andreas to find out more about how on earth this masterclass in weirdness got made.
LBB> One of my absolute favourite things about the film is the location (although maybe that's just my fetish for vintage Americana). What can you tell us about it? What were your main aims and inspirations for it?
Andreas> You know you can get treatment for those kind of fetishes, right? It's the oldest hair salon in Glendale in an area where the gentrification bomb hasn't exploded yet. The aim was to find a location that looked good on camera.
LBB> Cardi B kinda nails her role - how was she to work with? (I wrote that question without realising my atrocious pun.) How did she find the role with the imaginary nails?
Andreas> She insisted on growing her nails in-camera so that’s what we did. I have no idea how she pulled it off.
LBB> How many takes did it take for her to nail the 'nailed it' line?
Andreas> Cardi is a one-take-wonder kind of girl.
LBB> Tell me about the nail idea - did this come from the agency? What were you thinking when it was presented to you?
Andreas> It was in the original script that the agency wrote. My thought was ”well done”.
LBB> How did you actually capture the nails in post? What kind of research / prep was involved for them?
Andreas> Voodoo magic combined with C-vitamins.
LBB> Cardi B's fellow salon patrons are all excellent additions to the weirdness. What was the casting process like and what were you looking for?
Andreas> Half of the people are workers and clients at the salon. The rest are very close friends of mine from college.
LBB> And the music as the nails extend - what is it? What were your main aims here and why did you opt for this kinda trip-hoppy vibe?
Andreas> It was produced by a music company called Barking Owl. We wanted the music to feel nasty-smooth and erotic-electric as the nails crawled down Cardi’s leg like that snake in Garden of Eden.
LBB> Are there any specific details that you particularly enjoy about the film?
Andreas> Besides a big love for Cardi’s ad-libbing skills I also like the foot on the TV screen in the end.
Post Production / VFX
Post Production Company: The Mill
VFX Supervisor: Phil Crowe
Executive Producer: Anastasia Von Rahl
Production Company: Biscuit Filmworks
Director: Andreas Nilsson
Executive Producer: Holly Vega
Producer: Grace Bodie
DOP: Alexis Zabe
Partner: Shawn Lacy
Managing Director: Shawn Lacy
Head of Production: Mercedes Allen-Sarria / Rachel Glaub