This piece consists of a “one shot” walk through the history of Long Johns. Shot on location at the John Smedley factory.
We achieved the film via shooting the piece at 60 F/PS, whilst moving through the set with the help of a very skilled grip. We had to get from one end of the set to the other within 60 seconds, for the piece to then translate into a 120 second clip.
We achieved this shot in 12 takes and had a blast along the way.
We’d used the lead, Frank Ryan, for a small part in our promo for Toby Gale’s “Showdown” and had said during that shoot that we’d love to cast him centre stage for something in the future. There’s something endearing about Frank, his face tells you a lot.
We heard “More Bad Celebrity Poetry” and cast our minds back to characters we’d worked with. We knew this had to be a narrative piece, and we knew it had to be centered around a protagonist, then Frank popped into our heads and it felt like the video almost wrote itself from there on in.
We really took our time producing this. The video was created on a sub £2,000 budget so we designed everything along with our normal input. Costume, art direction, locations…it was all taken on by the three of us. We even converted the living room of the house the band live in into our bedroom set, lifting up carpets, sanding floorboards etc. It had to look the part.
We shot the video over three days on the Red Epic, in some beautiful locations surrounded by our closest friends within the Leeds filmmaking hub, it was an amazing experience and the video was a great journey for us. We learned so much from it. It was the first music promo we’ve made where the script largely transfers to the screen without compromise. We couldn’t really ask for anything more from it!
This piece was shot on the Red Epic in January 2013.
We had been talking about collaborating with Toby for a quite a long time before this video was shot.
Multiple tracks were sent our way and a lot of pondering and debating ensued and then he came back to us with Showdown.
After hearing the track, the video just sent our heads to a variety of classic 80′s cinematic imagery and from that point on the video almost wrote itself. Finding a lead actor that not only looked the part (yes, that is the lead characters actual hair) but could also dance was a real challenge.
Initially the video was written for a younger character, but after numerous auditions and plenty of sitting in on various dance classes throughout Yorkshire, it proved almost impossible. When we debated calling the concept off for fear of not finding the right character to tell the story, we received an email from Rueben Crossland-Jones.
Rueben had heard what we were looking for via word of mouth and the rest was history. We choreographed the piece ourselves which we really, really enjoyed and something we would never have imagined ourselves doing.
All in all, making this music video was so much fun. We had the time to really design and get our teeth into a lot of elements that really brought the piece together.
This piece was shot on the Arri Alexa in April 2012.
John Smedley is one of Britain’s oldest brands with a rich history of heritage and tradition. We decided to focus on the journey of a jumper, from thread to finish, to show the world the unique process that each garment goes through during its time within production.
When we visited the factory, we were startled by the immense volume and the array of sounds that populate the production halls, so decided to use these as the motive for the rhythm of the piece. All of the sounds (excluding the brass) that make up the music are recorded from the factory floor. Each member of the orchestra (or the person that was operating each machine) is credited at the end of the piece.
We hope you enjoy the finished product, this one was a pleasure to make.
This piece was shot on the Red Epic in May 2012.
We were contacted by Tape Club Records to shoot a music video for their band Laurel Collective. After pondering on where the track could go visually for quite a long time we got the image of a spaceman being washed up on a shoreline and being discovered. To us, the track is about someone who is the wrong place at the wrong time, so we tried to connect these two initial ideas.
We’re open to some pretty geeky stuff, and a few of us had been reading a great deal of “ancient alien” theories, that argue that life on our planet was started by some kind of extraterrestrial life form. This was before “Prometheus” was released – we thought we were on to something…
We started to like the idea of a spaceman encountering an indigenous race, and typically this lead us on to a whole host of imagery. Having access to relatively unremarkable locations in this part of the country (or more appropriately, the world,) really set us up with a challenge to create something immersive.
This was a big production for us, and it was tackled under a tight timeframe. So many things worked in our favour, such as all of the scenes on the beach being shot in the same day, yet two radically opposite types of weather marking a distinct difference between the two scenes that occur there – perfect for making the world in which the video is set look bigger and more diverse. One thing that we actually thought of in post production which we thinks aids the “escapism” somewhat, is the shot of the moon in the sky. It’s funny how you work backwards sometimes. We really relied on a lot of help from those involved in this production. Thank you so much to the crew, but particularly the cast.
This piece was shot on the Red Epic in July 2012.
For Everton FC’s Christmas campaign, we wanted to pay homage to John Lewis’ 2011 Christmas commercial, which became an instant classic upon it’s release.
This piece was a real challenge for us as it was produced, shot and online within 6 days. Tight.
We enjoyed this one as we got to work with snow machines, a young actor and a great crew.
This piece was shot on the Red Epic in November 2012.
A music video for Leeds/London based band Pengilly’s, for their new single “Toby’s Hill” (part of the EP of the same title). Pay as much or as little as you want to download it from here.
The band were fantastic to work with – all in all shooting this video was an absolute pleasure and one of the most enjoyable shoots we’ve been involved in.
Here is a video lookbook that we produced for our good friends over at The Hip Store for their 2011 Autumn/Winter collection.
Hip gave us full creative control over the project, which was both challenging and rewarding.
We wanted to play with a very loose narrative, within some locations we have wanted to shoot in since our manifestation as a company.
Shooting in the cave network that is depicted within the video was extremely testing for us. The caverns were 20 meters below ground level, with the location being a three quarters-of a mile crawl away from the entrance.
The claustrophobic gaps and crannies that both the us and the gear had to get through made the shoot very demanding, both physically and mentally. Two of our crew had minor panic attacks whilst on location, thus preventing them from returning to the shooting area. The project was shot in one day, with both pre production, production and post-production taking place over the course of three days! All in all, this piece was arguably the most difficult but memorable shoots we’ve embarked on and we’re extremely proud of the results considering the constraints we faced!
Crowns & Owls is a collective of filmmakers, founded in Leeds in 2010. We specialize in making music videos, commercials and fashion films. We love to tell stories and capture imagery that excites us. We’re flexible, we’re approachable and we’d love to work with you, wherever you are. If you like our work and want to know more, please get in touch or swing by our studio. Thanks for visiting…
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Crowns & Owls,
Unit 24, 30-38 Dock Street,
Leeds, LS10 1JF