Eno Freedman Brodmann on Smart Comedy and Confusing the Industry in ‘The Pitch’
“The Pitch” covers familiar ground – with handy advertising fruit always ripe for parody – but does so with particularly vivid sensibilities and rapid visual changes that deftly denigrate industry clichés. This would have been enough to ensure the popularity of the project with advertisers. But Freedman Brodmann takes it to another level, overturning his own script in the final images.
After much uproar Sturm und Drang, the film’s fictional CPG client kills the silent audio campaign before filming begins. And in its final scenes, “The Pitch” mourns this death of creativity (because even old ideas deserve a chance to evolve). We watch lead actress Lourdes Hernandez, who had just stared in a series of silly publicity scripts, hysterically losing her shit. Dressed in a motion capture costume, she chases a film crew down the street, her chance to become a “star” soaring as far as the eye can see.
Below, Freedman Brodmann, who once worked for Prettybird and Smuggler, among others, discusses “The Pitch,” his return to making real commercials and a decades-long obsession with poultry. We’ve edited the conversation for clarity.
Muse: So you’ve joined Ruffian. Why them?
Eno Freedman Brodmann: After the release of “The Pitch” I was approached by a number of companies and wanted to get advice from a few trusted directors to help me navigate the journey. I reached out to Nick Ball [the one who works behind the camera at Blink] … and he thought I had to meet Robert [Herman, co-founder/executive producer] at Ruffian. We’ve talked so much about ideas and creativity, especially disrupting the normal process of how things “should” be done. I also liked the fact that most of the roster and Robert were from outside the United States. They came with a different perspective and a sharp mind. He didn’t want to just classify me in comedy… I spent an evening going through Ruffian’s entire website and laughed as much as I cried. I felt like there was such a hybrid of sensitivity with humor, which I was looking for. I found myself smiling before my follow-up calls. I knew deep down that they were the right choice.
What types of things will you be working on?
We’ve just started and I’m already seeing scripts and brainstorming. I’m interested in doing work with a creative twist, and not necessarily strictly laughing out loud comedy. We are working to get jobs that have smart comedy and are a little more reserved in their approach. I can’t name any clients or when our first draft will be released, but hopefully soon.
How would you describe your business style?
I like smart comedy. Something that gets you thinking – an inventive way of looking at behavior. I like working with actors and building the script … to improvise and reconstruct their personal approaches. Merging their own lines with existing scripts during the editing process gives a more lively mix. I also strive to have a certain look that doesn’t fall into overly enlightened comedy.
Which of your commercials or movies best captures this style?
I did this piece called “20PM” with my friend Rick Darge at an Airbnb in LA in one night. He uses script as well as improvisation and mixes the worlds of comedy and emotion. It was a collage of behaviors that I had observed in my roommate after a few failed dates.