So, I love it when mainstream media involves the Western way of life/cowboys/rodeo, etc. Lately, there have been a few: Dodge Ram is doing more with rodeo, Wrangler bought an ad highlighting Trevor on Sports Illustrated and I even saw a commercial last night for a new beer called Jeremiah Weed that had some rodeo action in it.
Anyway, BlackBerry used a Canadian horse trainer, Jonathan Field, in a new commercial and it’s pretty cool. Check it out:
And, here’s some background about how it all came together:
?It was a real fluke,? says Jonathan. ?I had a new BlackBerry smart phone and was bragging about how cool it was to a lady whose horse I was training. It turned out that sHe’s an executive with Research In Motion (RIM), the company that owns BlackBerry. Her comment was, ?Hey! You?d be perfect for the BlackBerry ?Do What You Love? campaign!??
When asked about the filming, Jonathan?s enthusiasm became almost palpable. ?It was amazing! They had a 25-person film crew, 40? revolving camera cranes, and trucks that bounced alongside me as I galloped Hal.? ??So what did Hal think of this whole thing? ?Oh, he was great as usual,? laughed Jonathan. ?There was a moment or two, though. I cantered Hal bridleless and bareback underneath a 40? camera crane that was swinging just a few feet from Hal?s head, so Hal did a bit of wondering about this little camera lens that resembled an alien eyeball ? not to mention the beep-beep-beep sound it made!?
One would think that being in the spotlight had to produce even a small amount of anxiety. ?I arrived at the catering truck that first morning,? remembers Jonathan, ?and immediately the focus was on me. Everyone was saying, ?Hey, there’s Jonathan!?? All of a sudden I realized I was that guy! I was a little nervous at first, but once I was on my horse, it became a lot easier. The director suggested some scenic spots and asked me to just play with my horses. They started the cameras rolling and let the story evolve.
?To get to where the director wanted a creek shot, I rode Hal 150 yards up a rocky creek as he scrambled, slipped and slid on boulders. The film crew and I waited on the bank for half an hour so Hal could rest before the cameras shot us walking a mere 20? across the creek.? ?
Finding a schedule that suited all parties was a challenge. ?I had just finished teaching a clinic in horrible storms ? rain blowing sideways, thunder, lightning ??miserable conditions. The two days of filming were right after that, so I had my fingers crossed. But those were undoubtedly the best two days in November we?ve ever had! The first morning the director was excited because there was a spectacular layer of mist that hung over the background of the Virtue Studio Ranch in Mission, British Columbia that belongs to my friend Danny Virtue. Then it cleared off to a beautiful May-like day.? ?
This commercial has an impact beyond one horseman using a BlackBerry Bold smart phone. ?I was very excited and honored, of course,? states Jonathan, ?but the importance of this commercial goes beyond me and BlackBerry. The presence of horses and the horse/human relationship in a mainstream commercial is remarkable. This benefits the entire horse industry ? perhaps the inclusion of horses in commercials will now happen more often. RIM understood how horses capture people?s minds and dreams, and recognized the opportunity for the BlackBerry/horse connection. let’s hope other companies follow.”
So what did Jonathan think of the final commercial? ?I was surprised that the majority of it was about the horses and about me communicating with these animals. It was only at the end that they brought in information about the BlackBerry Bold smart phone. It was amazing.?