I have always thought of this project as: “Surprise! Flamingos!” In the tradition of pleasant hidden camera surprises (Coke Happiness Machine, Fanta Lift & Laugh) we wanted to get the word out about the ‘Fill The Hill’ fundraising effort in a unique way. We spent two days running around campus with T.C. DeWitt surprising students with flamingos. The gags that ended up in the video were the most toned down we had brainstormed. It is probably a good thing we didn’t have a false ceiling dropping flamingos onto TC or unsuspecting students 😉 It’s always better to start crazy and tone down as needed.
One of the easter eggs on this piece is how we got people to pay attention to the boat gag at the end. When we set up the boat with Flamingos we realized that the lake was big and the boat wasn’t very noticeable. We needed to draw attention to it. From the beginning we had the idea of the ‘driverless’ boat to make it more noticeable but we still needed something else. Working with T.C. DeWitt (our trickster) we developed a narrative where he would talk on the phone about the boat, amidst the crowd at the terrace, raise a stink, and then jump in the water and swim out to the boat. He did this amazingly and he left the people stunned. When we talked to them afterward one girl thought “I was seeing some kind of pirate takeover.”
Check out more of our videos with the Wisconsin Foundation & Alumni Association: