So We’re Funny, It Seems

When we started Corduroy Media, we didn’t actually set out to create comedy, but somewhere along the way, we discovered the fun of being funny.  And not only have we had a good time, but we’ve also gotten some pretty cool recognition.  

You may have heard us brag that while making new commercials for UC Hastings, we wound up creating the “greatest law school commercial ever.” declared Law Industry Blog Above the Law.

Fancy that.

One thing we’ve learned in our 13+ years in the industry is that as casual as comedy feels to the viewer, it actually takes a lot of thought and strategy to do it well. And we’ve learned by studying from some of the best.

One of our favorite director duo’s, who we actually have the opportunity to work with quite a bit, are some of bay area’s finest at telling a great story and making us giggle at the same time. The Perez Bros have perfected the art of the comedic short. Whether a music video, spoof commercial or PSA they push all the right buttons. Check out this piece, they wrote and directed in collaboration with Corduroy Media: Universal Gentrification.

Many of us here are big fans of writer/director Edgar Wright, the talented filmmaker behind Shaun of the Dead, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, and other modern classics. He’s created some of the funniest movies of the last 10 years and this video compilation by Tony Zhou became our touchpoint for bringing a sense of style to our comedic videos. In it, Zhou shows how Wright takes truly inventive approaches to framing, visual and audio cues, and editing to make sure that “funny” takes place through more than just dialogue.

To show just how much we were paying attention, here are a couple examples of how we applied Zhou’s advice to filmmakers in our work for UC Hastings and Aruba Networks:

1) Perfectly timed sound effects

In the “Mascot Tryouts” spot for UC Hastings, we wanted to introduce Prof. Scott Dodson with some character traits people may not know about and which would help make the school appealing to potential students. So as he pulls down the book that’s obscuring his face, three bullet points appear, each one accompanied by the sound of a striking gavel.

2) Things entering the frame in funny ways

One series of commercials we produced for Aruba Networks features Derrick The Dude, a guy who’s not great with technology or workplace etiquette in general. We learn almost everything we need to know about Derrick when we see his Camaro pull into a parking spot marked for electric vehicles only. The screeching tires, the guitar riff soundtrack, it all sets up the character so that by the time he actually walks into the office we feel like we already know him.

While we’re not going to claim that the UC Hastings commercials or the Derrick the Dude shorts can go up against Hot Fuzz, they do show how we work every day to take unique, innovative approaches to our client projects.  We employ our creative edge daily, and by doing so we help bring our clients’ messages to life. Not only do we have great time doing it, but we’re also stoked that our videos have earned our clients some additional and deserved recognition.

In need of video production and creative services? We can help.

At Corduroy Media, we’re not just a San Francisco video production company; we’re also a full-service creative agency.  What does that mean for you? It means you don’t have to have it all figured out before you come knocking. We can help you with creative direction, concept development, script writing, storyboarding services, casting, video production, post-production, and more. In other words, yeah, the whole shebang.  

Give us a call, and let’s get your project started today.