Friday, March 22, 2013

The Commercial is a Wrap (For Us)

Normally I write about burlap or vintage-themed posts. Today is not about either of those so if you're not interested navigate away now. I won't be offended. This post is about filming commercials on my dock and the life lessons that come along with it.

You may know that simply by happenstance a location scout found our dock while looking for a location to shoot a Publix commercial a couple of years ago. Another dock was chosen and it was a very well done commercial, as all Publix commercials are.

Several months later, a location scout familiar with Lake Ola was revisiting the location of a place where Tiger Woods had shot a commercial during his heyday. The problem with that location was that it was not a safe place for the jet ski stunts the script called for. So we became the location for part of the Labatt Blue Auction of Awesomeness campaign.

Next we were one of many locations for Cialis. In our shoot, the couple is holding hands looking off into the sunset while floating on inner tubes.  Now everyone we know runs to the tv whenever a Cialis commercial comes on to see if their house is in the background or if they see if it's the one with the inner tubes.

We never reveal who the shoot is for until it goes live. This commercial is a national Screen Actors Guild Union shoot so it will run nationally and was a great opportunity for everyone involved. There were four principal actors, two children, a screen mom and a hugely talented dog who at one point in his life resided in a high kill shelter. It involves a dog jumping off of a dock and will go live at the end of April.

Just our shoot employed many people and several dock diving dogs. One of the animal trainers and two dogs stayed across the street at the Cinnamon Inn. Another location was employed to launch the boats. A neighbor  and Lakewatch volunteer was utilized to assist with various duties. I became a short term production assistant when a crew member was late. Many people were blessed by the work opportunity to work on this commercial. It's a sign that our economy is recovering.

Now the commercial shoot is over for us. It is a multi-day shoot and today they are shooting in homes in Orlando. I am grateful for the opportunity to meet animal trainers who have trained national champion dogs, animals in movies and yes even lions, tigers and bears. We had dinner with one last night and I will remember her enthusiasm and passion for working with animals as I work with my own. If I'd met her when I was 19, I might have taken a totally different path in life had I been able to find a way.

People that have known me for a long time know that our friend Jeff Norton was killed in a robbery in Pinellas County going on three years ago.  He was a super talented actor who could do any stunt asked of him and if he couldn't would work on it until he could. So perhaps it is fitting that I discovered that the boat guy on the shoot  knew him. It seems that friends of Jeff's come up out of nowhere. I guess it shows that you will be remembered for who you are, not what you do. That's certainly something to think about…

Please don't speculate on the client in comments on this post. Such comments will be removed.


  1. What an interesting story and life you must lead. You are indeed blessed! Thanks for sharing.

  2. what a fun experience! love that dogs were included, i know that made it so much fun!


    1. Thanks for stopping by Carol and congrats on being published in Haute Handbag!!!