I grew up in New Hampshire so, by default, all of my heroes came from Boston sports teams: Wade Boggs on the Red Sox, Larry Bird on the Celtics, Ray Bourque on the Bruins, Doug Flutie on the Pats. When I played street hockey, I would be these dudes. When I dressed up for Halloween, I would be these dudes. When I put posters on my wall, they would be these dudes. I had role models that were all men because strong, powerful women were not visible at that time.
The damaging effects of not having empowered women visible to young girls is truly detrimental. I think of how different my life could have been if there were commercials on TV that featured strong, confident women like Alex Morgan and Abby Wambach. I am so excited that Secret is creating these two campaigns and would love to be part of the creative process.
I also loved Secret’s last spot, #IdRatherGetPaid. It was a fun, honest and important and brought attention to an issue women have been dealing with for generations. Thank you!
Look & Feel
Crafting a look that’s iconic, cinematic, visually dynamic will be essential to capturing the perfect emotional tone for these films. With that in mind, I plan on working with my DP and a storyboard artist to prepare every frame in great detail leading up to photography. Every shot, camera move and lens will be carefully selected to make sure the final product is absolutely gorgeous.
My plan is to shoot with the Arri Alexa Mini and use anamorphic lenses to get a highly cinematic and rich look to the film. Shooting anamorphic will give us great lens flares and a classic look that will resonate emotionally on screen, giving us powerful, memorable images.
Additionally, we’ll shoot with a second camera when possible to make sure every scene is covered and we don’t miss a moment of the action. Shooting with two cameras not only will give us more options in our edit but also will help us move faster through our daily shooting schedule. This will give us freedom to experiment, find unique and interesting angles and give the film an overall bigger and grander feeling.
For “Cheer” we’ll predominantly shoot off a dolly, providing smooth easy moment to each shot. We’d also make sure there’s a consistency to the lighting and over all color of the film. Cutting between interiors and exteriors can sometimes look sloppy or jarring if not done carefully. I’ll work with my team to ensure there’s an even tone that keeps our viewer fully engaged in the story on screen at all times.
With “Raise Daughters” we’ll be using a Steadicam to put us in the action, experiencing the moment. When filming with our Young Abby character, I’d like to bring a dreamy, etherial look to the film. It would look different from the present day scenes with Abby, while still visually connected with the film as a whole. We could do this incredibly effectively with just a slight color grading. I spoke to Beau Leon, Lead Colorist at Framestore in LA, and his feeling was that we could filter this in a way that gives a slight distinction to the look and makes it feel unique and warm while not actively trying to make it look like vintage footage.
Both films will be thoughtfully crafted and highly visual, bringing genuine emotion and anthemic energy to every beat of the story.
Both films will have a powerful and inspiring tone that draws in the audience and instantly gets them involved in the story on screen. We want to see and feel the strength and determination of our characters while simultaneously giving a visual display that is iconic and highly elevated.
We open on a shot of American soccer legend, Alex Morgan. She’s in an empty soccer stadium, the camera moving forward in slow-motion, gently pushing in on the frame. The space is cavernous and silent, making it feel like hallowed ground. Alex has a proud smile across her face as the electric colors of the early evening sky glow in the distance.
We now see why Alex is smiling. She’s flanked by two young girls, backs to camera, both of whom are wearing tracksuits with the name “MORGAN” across the back.
The camera returns to 24fps just as the girls turn around, revealing their adorable faces and large trophies they’re each holding. All three of them are strong and beautiful. Both of the younger kids wear the classic Alex Morgan hair band, one of them has black scuff under her eyes.
ALEX: “When you cheer for me...”
We cut to a slow, smooth, forward dolly move which brings the camera closer to the sidelines of a tightly contested high school soccer game. The teenage girls are huddled up during a break in play. They’re sweaty, exhausted, guzzling water, catching their breath, giving their all. We see the scoreboard in the background, the game is knotted at one apiece.
The coach turns to camera. COACH: “You cheer for me.”
After delivering her line, the coach goes right back to her players, we hear her say loudly and passionately, “Okay, everybody, bring it in!”
All the girls raise their right arm, their hands touching in a tight circle. They all chant with their full voices: “ONE, TWO, THREE, GO!” They rush off onto the field to close out this game.
We cut to a college locker room, camera pushing forward on a portrait-style frame of several young women sitting on a bench. They’re doing their own thing, facing different directions, talking, preparing. One is lacing up their spikes, another adjusts a shin guard, one is putting on their socks. One girl applies Secret deodorant and then tosses it down to a girl at the end of the bench, who catches it and puts it in her bag. Their mood is loose, we can feel their closeness, their familiarity. It’s all a bit loud and chaotic.
They all suddenly stop, look to the camera and say as a team: “And me.”
Cut to a youth league game. It’s night and they’re playing under the lights. The camera moves forward, dollying closer to a young girl who has the ball over her head, preparing to throw it in. The energy is buzzing as teammates try to make eye contact with her and slip the defense. She grasps the ball tightly, moving her feet, jockeying for a good position to make the best play.
A few feet behind her is her mother, filming the moment on her phone. Mom is proud but also nervous, this game is tighter than she’d like. As our camera move continues to we push in, we get a closer look at mom’s phone screen. The girl turns to the camera, and we see her (still on the mom’s phone screen) as she says confidently and directly: “You cheer for me.”
After delivering her line, the girl is immediately back in the play. The ref blows the whistle and without hesitation our player quickly tosses in the ball and runs onto the field and into the action.
Cut to a lone 12-year-old girl on a soccer field by herself, juggling a soccer ball. As we dolly forward, the light catches the lens, reflecting the late afternoon sun. She’s focused, completely locked in. We can see her sweat, hear her breath as counts with each bounce of the ball... “45-46-47-48”... She subtly glances over to camera, but continues counting, now to herself.
We hear her in Voice Over: “Cheer for me.”
Cut to two lines of adorable kindergarten girls, the camera moving slowly forward. One line moves away from camera, backs to us, the other line is coming forward, facing the camera. The girls all high five as they pass one another. They look happy, having had fun regardless of the score. Some kids are laughing, some are being silly, all of them are just being kids.
The last girl in line walks right up to camera, pauses, we continue our move, framing her perfectly as she smiles and says in her cute voice: “Cheer for all of us.”
Cut to a medium shot of two young girls. Now, for the first time in our film, we are slowly pulling BACKWARDS and in doing so, reveal two more kids. All four smile and throw their arms around each other’s shoulders.
Title card over: Her Victory is Our Victory.
Pulling back a bit further, we now see two happy female coaches, smiling, proud of their work. They high-five each other on a job well done and then lean in to pose with the girls.
Title Card: Our Secret Power is Each Other. #SeeAllOfUs
[THE TREATMENT CONTINUES, THOUGH THE SAMPLE ENDS HERE]