Sunday, 6 January 2013

The Art of Teasing

Well, we have officially released our teaser materials to the public. As filmmakers this is the best kind of incentive. The filmmaking life can be a very quiet one, especially if you are in the post-production phase. It can be years before you hear any sort of feedback from an audience for your work. And if you're not careful, years can turn into years and years. Being a perfectionist is, of course, a blessing and a curse. So, needless to say, it is definitely a strong incentive to finish Lullaby now that we have gone ahead and told the outside world that's what we intend to do. Releasing our Facebook page, Twitter page and website on January 1st seemed like the perfect New Years Resolution to us. It is a clear sign of what we plan to accomplish in 2013.

The teaser materials that we have released are just that -- a tease. We are not showing much and we know that. Of course that may be to the annoyance of some, but there is an art to teasing and if you look closely, we are actually showing you quite a bit. Well, that is to say, we're giving you a few starter pieces to the puzzle. And over the course of this year we will give you more. It is still some time before you'll see the film. There is plenty of work to be done and marketing is a strategic journey of its own. Giving you too much now just wouldn't be fun. So bit by bit we'll give you the pieces to what we hope is a very complex puzzle.

When I first met with Leslie Martin almost a year ago to discuss designing the promotional materials for William's Lullaby I stressed simplicity for the first phase. We both agreed that each phase of teaser materials would have its own level of simplicity and modesty. This is, in the end, a very quiet film -- loud in some of the taboo subjects it tackles, but quiet (and perhaps chilling) in its simple execution. Both Leslie and I wanted this to be reflected in our first teaser poster.

I never would have thought that so much work and thought would go into the selection of a font, but Leslie assured me that when you are creating what is essentially a logo (and one that you'll look at for years to come), it is a vital step in the process. After many different options, we came up with this is our final word-mark for Lullaby.

I love this look. Simple but chilling. Exactly what we were looking for from the start. The all-caps font is a bold choice. And the way the last few letters in "Lullaby" seem to separate suggests something far more sinister than a simple title, let alone one that reads as harmlessly as "William's Lullaby." The way the letters seem to drop into the black also suggest something much darker is at hand and this is something we wanted to make clear from the get-go. 

This also applied in Leslie's design of the first teaser poster in which the text, which fills the entire page, seems to drop into blackness before revealing, in all-caps, WILLIAM'S LULLABY at the very bottom.

Also, and this is what I mean when I say "look closely," the text that fills the page is of vital importance to the film. It is the classic story of The Ugly Duckling -- a duckling who did not fit in and felt himself unworthy, questioning himself, his looks etc... until one-day he finally transformed into the beautiful swan he was meant to be. Starting our teaser materials off with this was something we felt would be an excellent hook. 

Leslie also came up with a second teaser poster which essentially has the same information, in a slightly different form.

The William's Lullaby Duck Logo is also the face of our Facebook and Twitter page.

Again, Leslie has taken a simple, harmless image of a duck and transformed it into something quite ghostly while maintaining its simplicity. The medium she has used -- a rough, pencil-sketch like drawing reveals something dark and menacing.

We are suggesting, right off the bat, the idea of The Ugly Duckling -- that story and what it means in terms of loneliness, grief, depression and destiny -- is a major part of the story we are planning to tell. It might be of interest, given this information, that the original title associated with William's Lullaby years ago was "Ducklings and Swans."

I look forward to working with Leslie more on some of our upcoming teaser materials. So far I think she has done a brilliant job at "showing" rather than "telling" and holding back while still giving quite a bit. What do you folks think?

I'd like to briefly mention our first teaser trailer. I am perhaps guilty of showing too little here. But I do like holding back at this stage. What I can say is that this initial teaser has introduced you (very quickly, mind you) to Toby Bisson and Richard Sutton, two of our brilliant actors in the film. Furthermore, you catch a bit of Paul Barton's haunting score in the background.

Hope you have enjoyed what we've been giving you thus far. Plenty more to come over 2013 so stay tuned!

Please remember to share and spread the word. This film is lost without you!

Comment below and talk soon!


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