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Hold the (Voda)fone – we’ve done something a bit special…

You know that feeling when one of the world’s largest telecoms company trusts you to make the films it wants to use to attract new employees? You don’t? Oh it’s awesome. We heartily recommend it. It’s like winning an award, but the prize is work.

Sorry for the super confident opening, but now that we’re part American we have found an element of bravado to balance our very British need to downplay everything and be embarrassed by any success we have.

So yes, we’ve been working with Vodafone for over a year now and when they needed some films to launch the refresh of their EVP (Employer Value Proposition) they came to us. Hooray.

They wanted these films to give a really authentic feel of what it means to be a part of Vodafone. Working alongside their employer brand and branding teams we ended up with a brief to make 11 lifestyle films – six for the graduate market and five for existing employees and potential newcomers already working in the field.

We cast our net far and wide and found some amazing Vodafone employees so that we could shoot them doing whatever they do – the things they love, their hobbies, just living their lives. It was an intense shooting schedule, because as is often the case our time was limited – we had eleven days to cover a wide variety of topics and locations, and thanks to this it felt like we were on a completely different shoot every day.

Of course not every day was joyous. A day spent sat on a train from London to Leicester, not even getting off at Leicester and then returning to London is the perfect response to anybody who thinks what we do is glamorous. Some other days, however, were inspired. For the ‘Shaping The Future’ youth film we were supposed to be filming a young woman, Gemma, who has a passion for cycling riding her bike around a park. This, however, is England so of course it was hammering it down. Director Arthur Lewin scoured the local area and happened upon an underground skate park that was perfect, even better there was an abandoned shopping trolley just waiting to be filled with a DOP and a camera and used as a dolly. The results of this improvised shoot were some of the best of the whole project. It was certainly the most fun.

Whether shoots went exactly according to plan or had to be changed at the last minute there was one constant – the brilliance of everyone involved and especially the Vodafone staff. It’s rare to see such commitment to filmmaking from those not actually making the film, but these guys did every single thing that was asked of them, some had already flown hundreds of miles but they were still prepared to go an extra one. Walking in the rain? No problem. Up before dawn so we can shoot you running against a sunrise? Sure thing. They were a genuine joy to work with, and that comes across on film. As a result, these films aren’t “authentic”, they’re authentic. What you see is real people who really enjoy what they do.

We produced all 11 films as well as a host of other material including social recuts, photos, posters, gifs and banners and it all went from concept to delivery in less than three months. It’s all some of the best work we’ve ever done, both in terms of the quality of work on screen and the overall achievement on the project. We were delighted, and more importantly so was the client. Here’s what they had to say…

“The brief was to stay true to the new brand identity and tag line yet flesh out the uniqueness of the people at Vodafone and the creative bunch at Casual Films did it again. They helped us bring the employer brand to life, combining the emotional power of film of advert quality with the authenticity of user-generated video. We all have some great footage we cherish of our last days of pregnancy or of the last half marathon we ran (pre babies).”

So yes, boast mode reactivated, they’re chuffed, we’re chuffed – what do you think? Have a watch of the Hero films that deliver the overall message:

And let us know what you think. Not to our faces though – we are still terribly bashful Brits afterall.


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