What it Takes to Create a Video Ad on an iPhone 5S

What it Takes to Create a Video Ad on an iPhone 5S

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A few days ago we bought you news of a video ad/documentary from Bentley, shot entirely on an iPhone 5S, and edited using iPad Air, and Movie app. Although those Apple devices were indeed used, the ad was produced by a highly professional and experienced film crew, and so of course they had access to other equipment which they used to support the shoot. We spoke to Graeme Russell of Bentley, and Austin Reza of Reza & Co., the L.A. based Creative Agency behind the ad to confirm the lenses, and other accessories used during the filming. If you haven’t yet seen it, take a look below. The behind-the-scenes info starts at 3:16.

The Challenge: Produce a Professional Video Using Only iPhones and iPads

Luxury car manufacturer Bentley approached Reza & Co with a very specific challenge: to produce a professional quality film about the iPad integration feature in the Bentley Mulsanne, but use only iPhones to shoot and iPads to assemble/edit. The agency undertook the challenge using the following equipment:

  • 3 Apple iPhones 5S
  • For their handheld rig, the crew used an iPhone 5s with a BeastGrip case. This worked seamlessly with a handful of threaded lenses, most notably the Neewer 0.3X Baby Death 37mm Fisheye Lens.
  • The second iPhone was mounted to a new prototype BeastGrip case with suction cups for interior and exterior mounting. This was a smaller unit built for speed and additional b-roll angles.
  • For their steadycam rig, they equipped the third iPhone 5s with the Movi 5 case and Schneider iPro lens. Movi 5 was among one of the most important pieces of production equipment. It made every shot dynamic and increased the production value far beyond what they anticipated. The Schneider iPro played an important role as well, easily removing and attaching optics, with a modified iPro case.
  • The crew used Freefly’s $5,000 MōVI M5 gimbal stabilizers for all of the handheld shots.
  • With help from Filmic Pro software – which records at 24fps and 50 mbits – we were able to increase dynamic range and maximize production quality.

bentley ad equpment

The film was edited in the comfort of the Mulsanne’s back seat (a makeshift $300,000 production suite), using fully integrated iPad Airs. The luxury car comes complete with a Wi-Fi hotspot, two electrically deployed picnic tables with iPad holders, and high-end audio components. Using the iMovie app, the agency were able to complete initial cuts and review rushes. They were also amazed at the quality of the phone footage once they moved to the black and white timing. The entire production staff was shocked to see how beautiful the final shots actually looked.

Reza and Co confirm that they will continue to use this highly versatile setups on future projects, both large or small. Great optics, software, and hardware were key. The results exceeded expectations, especially having accomplished them in the most luxurious piece of production equipment they have ever had the privilege of driving.

The ad is a hugely clever way of highlighting the Mulsanne’s technical features (not that many of us will ever get to experience them). It also shows that an experienced film crew can produce a beautiful piece of footage on any equipment they are given.


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