When a cyclone stops filming, Stage and Screens shines
When the weather Gods turned nasty on the final day of a long shoot, Red Engine Creative turned to Stage and Screen to find a light at the end of the tunnel.
Who is Red Engine Creative?
Red Engine Creative is the television commercial production arm of the Seven Network. They are responsible for producing content and commercials for the network’s sponsors and advertisers. Their filming takes them to city, regional and remote locations across Australia. Stage and Screen has been their dedicated travel management company since 2014.
Beautiful one day, a cyclone the next
When the team from Red Engine Creative were caught out by Cyclone Trevor in March 2019, the filming timeline for their client Better Homes and Gardens fell apart. On the fifth day, of a five-day shoot, a full day of filming was scheduled to be held on Lady Musgrave Island off the coast of Bundaberg. However when the boat trip to the island was deemed too dangerous an alternative filming location had to be found – fast.
So who do you turn to in a crisis? For television commercial producer, Jill Munt the first call she made was to Stage and Screen travel manager, Phil Paull. “Phil received intermittent (and possibly panicked!!) phone calls from me on location and remained calm, efficient and professional throughout,” said Jill. “Re-routing us as needed, he asked sensible questions and it was comforting to know that such a sensible brain was on my side when the weather Gods certainly were not.”
Turning to Plan B
Over a crisis breakfast meeting the team decided to instead move the shoot to Longreach in outback Queensland the following day. Phil set out securing airfares, while Jill confirmed that the crew and talent could all commit to the new schedule. At 5pm the new location was confirmed and Phil pushed the green light on the flights and car hire for the next day.
“Phil thinks with a production mindset, he double checks everything and leaves nothing to chance,” said Jill. “He even logged in on a Saturday to check we’d picked up the cars and that the shoot was back on track.”
Keeping the cameras rolling
Stage and Screen understands that when travelling with a film crew and talent the important thing is to minimise downtime, as everyone is being paid for their time - and also overtime. “Phil understands that we need everything to run as seamlessly as possible and he’s always proactive with time saving, problem solving solutions,” said Jill. “He will often suggest a faster way to get somewhere, with better airline connections, all so that we have more shooting time and we spend less time sitting around airports.”
Travelling with mountains of camera equipment can also be costly, however Stage and Screen negotiated rates with Virgin Australia minimise the expense. While Phil’s knowledge of the client also assists with securing hire vehicles that are cost-effective, but which can still carrying the crew and all their film gear.
“In 24 years of Production there is no travel service or individual I have trusted as much as Mr Phil Paul!”
Jill Munt, Producer – Red Engine Creative