Task at Hand

CheckMark Communications asked rukus and DP Jon Michael Ryan to create a :30 second spot for Purina® Pro Plan® to congratulate the 2015 Westminster Kennel Club (WKC) Best in Show champion.

Working Against the Clock

The world famous Best in Show award is presented at 11pm EST on the final day of the event, held in New York City’s Madison Square Garden. For our spot to air on national television shows the following morning, i.e., Good Morning America, The Today Show, Fox and Friends, and The View, they needed delivery no later than 3:30am EST the next day. That deadline gave us only four-and-a-half hours to finalize copy, fine-tune editorial, capture voiceover, perfect audio, color correct, and of course, create files for trafficking.

Play by Play

During the two days of competition that preceded the Best in Show award, DP Jon Michael Ryan camped out ringside in Madison Square Garden to capture beautiful, high-speed footage of over 180 potential dog winners. We also set up a Pix240i in the broadcast booth to record the judges’ announcements. Meanwhile, runners darted between the live show and our mobile editing suite one block away to drop off footage to rukus’ editor, Nick Stroot, who began picking shot selects for each dog.

Nick describes the evening: “At 11pm the winning Beagle [Miss P] was announced and my job got a little nuts. My suite immediately filled with the crew, agency, clients, etc. Eduardo [Nieuwenhuyzen] (CheckMark GCD) and I quickly sifted through all footage we had of the Beagle and chose the best shots. While Emily [Puricelli] (CheckMark ACD) finalized the script with the Lisa [Pacatte] (Purina® Pro Plan®), I got started editing right away.”

Next, both agency and client patched into rukus’ St. Louis studio for a midnight VO record (actually 11pm CST). Files went back to NYC for layback, then to STL again for rukus’ audio engineer, Gabe Doiron, to finalize audio for broadcast. After color correction and precious render time, we trafficked the spot at 3:30am. One very suspenseful hour later, Tylie (media distributor) called to confirm receipt and traffic for broadcast.


The final spot (above) aired during a 7:52am commercial break from ABC’s Good Morning America.

Overall, this project was a whirlwind of fun. We owe many thanks to our friends at CheckMark—Emily, Ryan, Leah, and Eduardo—who, with the help of Jon Ryan, pulled the entire creative approach together in a matter of two weeks. We’re ready for WKC 2016!

By Mairin O’Leary, Project Manager