#onedaywith Felix von der Laden
Intern meets Influencer
One Day on Set
Instagram is perhaps THE channel of the hour. We, at E.ON, also rely heavily on the image & video platform and have become industry market leaders on it. But due to big changes in our company, we decided to give ourselves a makeover and an Instagram relaunch was born! In this context, we not only created a completely new style for our posts, but we also launched a small e-mobility campaign, called: E_xperience.
The idea behind the campaign was to tell an exciting story in collaboration with creator, influencer and professional race car driver, Felix von der Laden. In the style of the well-known video game, Grand Theft Auto (GTA), Felix had to complete various missions. The most important part: all means of transport had to be electric. The most exciting part: I, as an intern, was allowed to tag along and accompany the action first-hand! Keep reading here to experience my journal log for the day!
Good Morning Sunshine
Rrrrring! It’s only 4 a.m. when my alarm clock rings. Today I'm flying to Copenhagen, together with my colleague Rainer, who looks after our Instagram account and often works with influencers.
I’m as happy as a kid on the first day of school and hop out of bed, ready to roll. At 5:10 a.m. my taxi is supposed to take me to Tegel Airport. Everything works like clockwork. Shortly thereafter, I’m standing at the counter, only one and a half hours before take-off.
But Rainer shows me that this whole process can be a bit more relaxed, by showing up 10 minutes before boarding – to find me totally excited and already standing in the line to board the plane.
Copenhagen, Here we Come!
The plane takes off and one hour later we land on Danish soil in Copenhagen. We meet the crew of achtung!, the agency that takes care of today’s shoot and also helps with the entire E.ON Instagram relaunch.
From the airport, we head to pick up a rental car. There, we meet Felix von der Laden, the star of the day, his management and the film crew from Escape Filmproduktion. I'm surprised how young and small the whole team is.
There’s not much time for small talk. The team has already checked all of our locations the day before, so off we go. Like a precise watch, everyone in the team has a specific role. Our little caravan is off to the first location.
Together with Mathias, who will look after us throughout the day, we start our journey.
Hunting on Roller Blades
On the first set, on a small side street, we meet our Danish E.ON colleague Nicolai, who had already helped the crew the day before with helpful tips and ideas for locations.
Cameraman Jannik puts on some roller skates. The following takes are filmed from a "third-person perspective" to mimic the typical look of a video game and give the viewer the feeling that he is participating in a game with Felix as a character.
With a long stick with a GoPro at the end, he hurries behind the electric car, driven by Felix. Both drive up and down the road, turning a few corners until we have all the shots we need.
In the meantime, another part of the crew is preparing for the next take. The basic idea behind all the scenes for the challenges is to get everything & everyone to a wedding on time, including the best man, who is hungover and has overslept. Felix, as a friend of the best man, must bring him with an e-car to city hall. But when they get there, it becomes clear that he has forgotten the rings. So, back they go, this time with an e-scooter. The team members from achtung! also took over some of the roles. For example, Frederik played the role of best man and did his job with a lot of impressive improvisation and physical comedy.
With a Car as a Changing Room
Bringing a groomsman to a wedding does not sound complicated. But under such high pressure, in a short amount of time, while trying to change into a suit in the car, it looks much more exciting and fun. Especially when a professional race car driver like Felix von der Laden is behind the wheel.
Thank God I'm not in the car! After some sharp corners and a rapid U-turn, the two of them reach city hall, and Frederik dashes in to attend the wedding.
On the town hall square, we draw many glances, as we run through with all of our film equipment. In the breaks, Felix is constantly approached by fans, who ask for his autograph and a selfie. He says yes, very casually and politely.
The next take is again shot with an e-scooter. Felix has to drive with the scooter all around the town hall square. Skillfully he maneuvers through the gaps on the busy square, as Jannik follows him, as usual, on roller skates with the GoPro on a stick. I am particularly struck by how committed Felix is to his work. He obviously enjoys the shoot, brings in his own ideas and is in a good mood. Everyone on the set is consistently positive and exuberant because we all feel like we’re in a cool, well-functioning campaign.
The next mission revolves around the forgotten wedding rings, for which some of the footage was pre-produced the day before. Frederik hands over the rings to Mona von achtung!, who’s dressed up as the maid of honor, just for this one take. This scene is shot quickly. Any material produced is sent via messenger to an adjacent hotel at lightning speed, where a cutter assembles the video material in GTA style to post it in a story to our Instagram channel an hour later.
Post-production as Fast as Lightning
We would like to have a personal look at the footage and visit with Niat, the project manager, at the hotel to see how it works with cutting on the spot.
With this campaign, the time pressure is immense, because we want to post as quickly as possible, to maintain a live feel. Felix sometimes does this directly on his channel in his stories. But most of the material still has to be edited - hard work for the editor, a laid-back guy, who edits graphics in no time, changing scenes, adding music, and giving the pictures a GTA-worthy look.
Fluffy, fluffier, Stitch
The last mission is called: "Walk the dog"
Our next scene: one of the wedding guests has a dog, and while Felix is looking after him, in the car, it becomes clear that the dog needs to go to the bathroom!
In real life, the dog is called Stitch, and belongs to our Danish colleague Nicolai. Actually, another dog was scheduled for the shoot, but after the team met Nicolai the day before, including his dog, everyone fell in love with Stitch and he was hired. Again, it showed how useful it was to shoot in Copenhagen, where we met our helpful colleagues who improved the entire production.
In a nearby park, we shoot the last scenes of the mission, which then had to be sent to the hotel.
Mathias gives us a signal from a distance with a steering gesture that we should start driving. Nicolai, who had put his dog back on the leash, looks at me in amazement: "So ... I guess for the next scene ... they wanna ... milk my dog ?? !!" I can’t stop laughing. I tell him it's a gesture that means to start driving. He laughs and says "I couldn’t know, because I don’t have a driver’s license!"
The last Take: An E-Boat with E.ON Charger
While the last mission is still being cut, Nicolai spontaneously suggests an improvisation. There is an e-boat rental nearby and we use this opportunity to add another vehicle to our E_xperience story. We're building an element into the Instagram video where a user asks Felix if he can also use an e-boat. And already we’re filming the corresponding scene.
It doesn’t get any better than this: on each pier there’s an E.ON charging station - perfect for our shoot, which will be the last take of the day. "It's a wrap!", is the usual call at the end of a production day. But while some, like Felix, Rainer and myself, leave for the airport, the production crew has to do some final work at the hotel.
Shortly before midnight, I arrive back home in Berlin. Slightly exhausted from a long day, but also happy to have been involved in such an interesting production with a cool top influencer.