When they serve a big dinner on Downton Abbey, there seems to be as many servants and cooks downstairs as there are guests upstairs.
Well, that's nothing.
In the holiday food TV spot we recently worked on for Stouffer's entrées, it took a crew of more than 30 to serve dinner for nine actors.
Produced by Priestly & Company for the Swift agency, the spot features a continuous overhead tracking shot, looking straight down on a mix of family and friends enjoying a holiday meal, including lots of dishes from Stouffer's line of frozen foods.
Shawn Sundby served as both director and DP to a cast and crew of dozens.
The final spot tracks along five tables put end-to-end--just like those big dinners at Grandma's house (minus the rickety card table). And through some clever digital trickery the nine actors were multiplied into eighteen, so everyone got to eat twice. Come to think of it, this is also eerily like dinner at Grandma's.
As you know, food is notoriously difficult to shoot and still look appetizing. But the food stylists and lighting director did an incredible job.
Take a look at some of our production stills, then scroll down to watch the finished spot.