Bruton Stroube

Enterprise debuts Documentary on NBC Sports – “The Road Through Warroad: Hockeytown USA™”

Enterprise released the debut of its first documentary film, “The Road Through Warroad: Hockeytown USA™” written and developed by Cannonball, and produced by Bruton Stroube. The film presents a groundbreaking advertising model –  a 30-minute broadcast piece that isn’t an infomercial, but rather a brand-funded, agency-created, non-commercial short documentary film worthy of airing on a national sports network.

Here’s the full episode:

 
The film tells the story of Warroad, Minnesota –  a small town of less than 2,000 people that has produced seven Olympic hockey players, five NHL players and more than 80 Division I college players.

Bruton Stroube worked with Cannonball, Enterprise’s creative agency of record, to bring Warroad’s story to life.

“Enterprise is the rental car company that picks you up physically, and our approach to the brand’s digital storytelling is to pick you up emotionally, too,” says Matt Collins of Cannonball, who serves as Co-Creative Director with Travis Ulmer on Enterprise’s content initiatives. “Enterprise is an official sponsor of the NHL, and we feel this grassroots hockey story is exactly the kind of video that will connect with fans of the game,” continues Collins.

Initially, the plan was to develop a 2- or 3-minute web film like most branded content pieces. “After a couple days of shooting it became clear there was so much more to this story we should tell,” remarks Travis Ulmer. “After our first weeklong shoot, we drafted a long-form outline, shared it with Enterprise, and they eagerly sent us back to Warroad to complete the story.”

The mystique of Warroad’s legacy, coupled with Enterprise’s content strategy goals, presented us as a production studio with an exciting challenge. “Creating commercial content is usually very targeted –  you always have a clear objective in mind,” says Director Tim Wilson. “What was so freeing about this project was that we were able to let the story guide us. We just kept chasing what we felt like the strongest narratives were.”

Much of that chasing began with Producer Matt Siemer. “It’s one phone call at a time, one interview, one friend-of-a-friend network connection. You’re chasing down the heart of the story, but along the way you get to really know the people that live in the community.”

The film features interviews with current NHL winger T.J. Oshie, two-time Olympic silver medalist Gigi Marvin, U.S. Hockey Hall of Famer Henry Boucha, parents, neighbors, and multiple hockey professionals that returned to their hometown to encourage the next generation of hockey players. “That has been the real payoff for me on this piece,” continues Siemer, “to see firsthand the passion and dedication that makes Warroad such a special place.”

Bruton Stroube Editor Lucas Harger comments on developing the story through post production. “The nature of this specific story really allowed itself to have texture. We had this beautifully shot footage from the production days, mixed with great archival images, mixed with 8mm footage we transferred (some of which hasn’t been seen since it was developed), mixed with hours of VHS material, mixed with radio –  an ongoing list of elements. Once culled down, it was an exercise in transitioning through all these mediums, which informed the breadth and pace of the narrative.”

The new documentary premiered on NBCSN as part of the network’s Hockey Day in America coverage on Sunday, February 19, at Midnight ET/9 p.m. PT. You can watch the full episode now on NBCSports.com.

 

 

CREDITS
Producer: Matt Siemer
Director: Tim Wilson
Director of Photography: James McKenzie
Editor: Lucas Harger
Sound Design: Steve Horne

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

Prop Stylist/ Seeker Cathy Rauch has retired after 28 years working here at Bruton Stroube Studios. She’s been an absolute joy to work with day-in, day-out on too many projects to count.

She got her start here on an odd project. I’ll let Tom Stringer, President Emeritus and guy-who-was-there, do the talking.
“In the late 80’s, there was the Spuds MacKenzie campaign – an English Bull Terrier who was always dressed in various costumes and almost always accompanied by one or more Beer Babes. We were charged with the task of photographing these Beer Ladies in custom-made costumes – brightly colored one-piece jumpsuits complete with beer logos – form-fitted, usually to a size 1 bottom and a size 44 top – all in Spandex. I needed somebody to make all this stuff, and I was in a bind. Thankfully, my wife Vikki, who was more resourceful than I, suggested we call Cathy, who was at the time a seamstress and an all-around craftsperson. Thus Cathy’s genesis with us was as a premier seamstress designing and making weird clothes for a dog and for uniquely built women.

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

Her craftsmanship was beyond excellent.

When I offered Cathy the job 28 years ago, little did she know I was offering her the worst job in history. The job description of a prop stylist could be stated as follows:
• You will be asked to find something that often does not exist.
• If it does exist, you won’t have enough time to find it.
• If you find it, you won’t have enough budget to pay for it.
• Then, once you find and deliver the perfect item, in time, for a cost we can afford, the photographer won’t really like it.
• But we might live with it if you can’t find something better.
• And if not, you’ll have to return it.
• Then, after we shoot the item, you will have to find a home for it along with the other 200 items we needed to present to the client.
You will be asked to do this over and over, often for several projects simultaneously.

That’s the job description I did not tell her. If I had, Cathy may not have taken the job. But I didn’t. And she did take the job. And she mastered that job and much more. She did an exceptional job turning seemingly impossible situations into commercial successes.â€

Cathy defined her role, she owned it, and she showed all of us how important her work is to the industry. If that’s not enough, she made everyone who was in touch with a project feel at ease, and she handled situations with grace, kindness, and levity. That’s a rare quality in the business.

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

A Fond Farewell To our Favorite Seeker

I think there’s still one question on all of our minds – how is it possible, in 28 years, that she could do her job, so well… drinking only decaf coffee? It doesn’t seem physically possible.

We’re gonna miss you Cathy! Have a blast conquering the world!

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Reenacting a love story can be sweet and cheezy and riotously embarrassing, and we have some behind the scenes proof. If you haven’t seen the video/ card, head on over: “A Bruton Stroube Holiday Love Story”

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Here’s the original post we did on that fateful Pointersaurus Challenge. Ah, true love in the making.

Credits
Brainstormers: The entire Bruton Stroube Crew
Directed by Tim Wilson
Director of Photography: James McKenzie
Written by Tim Wilson, Eric Sucher, and Sam Iba
Editor, Colorist: Andy DeVries
Sound Design and Mix: Steve Horne
Producers: Eric Sucher, Sam Iba
VO: Bill Stultz

Behind the Scenes: 2016 Holiday Card

Bey says stay safe out there. Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays!

Two of our producers got married this past weekend – to each other! Sam Iba and Eric Sucher met here and we’ve watched their love story unfold in real time from the beginning. We thought it’d be fun to recapture their holiday-trimmed tale of togetherness in our 2016 holiday video card.

Now, if you’ve met Sam, you probably know at least 2 basic things about her: she loves Christmas and she loves Eric. And Beyonce. Ok, yes, I see that that’s 3 things, but just know that they did send a wedding invitation to Beyonce* and that she did make an appearance**.

*unverified
**in life-size cardboard cutout form

From all of us at Bruton Stroube, thank you for making this an amazing year. We wish you and yours Happy Holidays! Snuggle up to your nearest/dearest and enjoy “A Bruton Stroube Holiday Love Story.”

Oh, and here’s some behind the scenes silliness to get you through that winter chill.

Our previous holiday videos/cards, if you feel like browsing:
2015 Holiday Card
2014 Holiday Card (2014 BTS)
2013 Holiday Card & BTS
2012 Holiday Card (2012 BTS)
2011 Holiday Card (2011 BTS)
2010 Holiday Card
2009 Holiday Card (2009 BTS, 2009 Testing)
2008 Holiday Card
2007 Holiday Card
2006 Holiday Card
2005 Holiday Card

“Farming Sport” for Dyna-Gro

The cool kids at Paradowski Creative came to us with a great idea for Dyna-Gro. The concept was to highlight the punched-up hustle that goes into a farmer’s day. With both stills and a 60-second spot to shoot, Greg Stroube’s photography team and the motion team rounded out a solid production.

Motion
“Farming Sport”

Credits
Producer: Matt Siemer
Director: Tim Wilson
DP: James McKenzie
Editor: Andy DeVries
Sound Design: Steve Horne

Stills

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

 

 

Production – Behind the Scenes
It wasn’t all fun and games… there was also sprinklers, sparkles, and seed naps.

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

Irrigators be watering. Assistants be tarping.

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

Those super macro slo-mo shots of hot metal sparks flying at the camera:

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

James and the lens were shield twinsies.

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

BTS CUBED – Matt shooting Mandi Shooting Greg Shooting Farmer:

“Farming Sport†for Dyna-Gro

Since you stuck around this far, may you be rewarded with a glimpse of Producer Matt Siemer keeping things breezy on set.