Your Shot: “LA PROCHAINE FOIS” for Pret-A-Surf
By Duffy Higgins A76 Productions
A76 Productions owner/director Duffy Higgins discusses the making of La Prochaine Fois, a successful branding short for client Pret-a-Surf that highlights the company’s clothing line though the use of effective storytelling and eye-catching visuals.
The short follows Swedish model Elsa Hosk’s transformation from bikini babe to surf siren to garner the attention of a cute surfer boy on the beach, all thanks to Pret-a-Surf’s progressive clothing line.
La Prochaine Fois has already been featured at numerous film festivals across the world, in fashion magazines and various fashion-driven blogs online. The film recently caught the attention of Italian luxury brand Dolce & Gabanna who are currently working with A76 Productions to shape their own branding message.
Duffy Higgins > “We approached Pret-a-Surf with a number of creative ideas in hand to advertise their clothing line. They considered their options and finally gave us the go ahead with La Prochaine Fois.
Obviously we needed to cast the right model to showcase the clothes, but one that was a good enough actress to carry the story. It was a fine line: a model that looks great in a swimsuit to appeal to the brand demographic, but a model that can obviously act and carry the part.
Since Elsa Hosk was already Pret-a-Surf’s model we decided to cast her to keep things consistent in terms of look and feel. We were also aware that Elsa had acted in small films so felt she could carry the part. We actually didn’t have extensive dialog in the film because the majority of the acting was shown through facial expressions to convey the character’s personality.
Elsa understood the concept very well, that each day she would wake up with a little more optimism in her eyes, dressing in a new beach costume to attract the surfer on the beach. She actually did an amazing job with just her eyes.
The shoot called for one day at the Sea Spray Cottages in East Hampton. We arrived looking for sunshine and blue skies but were greeted with a heavy sea mist hanging over the beaches - kind of ironic when I realized that the cottages were named after the very sea mist rolling in off the ocean.
Director, Duffy Higgins, on set
Equipment-wise we shot with DSLR Canon 5D Mark II with PL Mount and a 50mm Zeiss Super Speed. The conditions ended up working to our advantage because we were able to capture an ethereal, atmospheric look. We shot everything flat using Technicolor’s CineStyle setting in the 5D and were able to bleach out the air and mist and consequently pop the colors and so highlight the clothing line. This really works well by drawing the eye directly to the product on screen.
An unfortunate aspect to the overcast day was losing the tail end of the shoot due to the lack of light. Consequently we needed one more pickup day, shooting at Daylight Studios in NYC to complete the dialogue between the characters.
The post process included the addition of the track “Hurry Hurry” by singer Jessie Baylin. It was a godsend, the perfect song in both tempo and feel. Producer Neil McLellan at The Lodge stepped in to help us out, looping in the song’s chorus at strategic points during the film to accentuate specific moments.
We also employed multiple framework as a creative device to help communicate the film’s simple but effective storyline.
These frames move the story along and keep the audience intrigued. It’s a style that also echoes one of Elsa’s outfits, a Mondrian design of clean lines and strong colors. This also helped tie everything together.
The final piece holds together nicely with multiple frames and music that work together perfectly to create the very esthetic that Pret-a-Surf were seeking – a vintage, old school, late 60s Riviera feel that highlights their clothing line to a young, female demographic.”
La Prochaine Fois Credits:
Written & Directed by Duffy Higgins & John Jaxheimer
Director of Photography Eric Giovon
Assistant Camera Anthony Mancilla
Grip/Gaffer Ryan Hayes
Production Coordinator Lilliana Bonafini
Production Coordinator Leigh Ann Kocur
Production Assistant Sarah Jaxheimer
Production Intern Giulia Armentano
Wardrobe Stylist Kristen Baranovic
Hair/MakeUp Diane DaSilva
Hair/MakeUp Asst. Rosemarie Bernardo
Film Editor/Colorist John Reis
Sound Editor Rob Daly
Original Music “Hurry Hurry” by Jessie Baylin
Score Engineer Neil McLellan & Kevin Dawkins
Filmed on location at Sea Spray Cottages, East Hampton, NY; and Daylight Studios, NYC