Right from the very start, Cinema Wheel Co. has done things differently, from team organization to parts manufacturing to videos. Last December, four Cinema team riders (Nathan Williams, Corey Martinez, Sean Sexton, Dakota Roche) attended the Rebel Jam in the Netherlands, and made a pit stop with Cinema team manager/videographer Will Stroud in Barcelona, Spain for five days to film a new video. But Cinema didn't just throw it online right away. The brand has actively been promoting the online premiere of the video for the past month, and tomorrow, it finally premieres on the Cinema Wheel Co. site. Curious about their approach to the Barcelona video, as well as the logistics of trip videos in Europe, I managed to get Will Stroud to answer some questions about tomorrow's premiere. Read on.
ESPN.com: Most web videos are thrown online with little preparation or build up, but Cinema is actively taking a different approach with their travel videos. I've been seeing ads for the Barcelona video for close to a month now. What made you guys want to tease this video instead of just throwing it online?
Stroud: I guess we just wanted to experiment with this Barcelona video and see if running banners and a print ad actually helps drive traffic. Lately, the Internet seems to be out of control with the amount of daily BMX content that is produced and blogged. So I guess we just wanted to see if pre-hyping a video feature a little more helps with longevity and sustaining traffic. The only downfall I can think of is "over-hyping" a video that might not be as good or exciting as all the hype leading up to it. I don't want to get into the quantity versus quality argument here, but we really try to make all of our Cinema edits great, so it's a bummer when they're on the second page of some blogs four hours after they drop. There's been a lot of debate on how to fix this problem but to my knowledge no one has come up with a perfect solution just yet.
Lately, the Internet seems to be out of control with the amount of daily BMX content that is produced and blogged.
What are the logistics behind planning an extended Barcelona trip for the team?
Well, fortunately for me, we had the support of a lot of the team's co-sponsor to pull off this Barcelona trip. Once I found out that Dakota Roche, Sean Sexton, Corey Martinez and Nathan Williams were going to the Rebel Jam comp in the Netherlands, I asked them if they'd be down to head to Barcelona for a quick Cinema trip after the comp. Once they all confirmed, I started planning and thinking of ways to make this trip possible. Vans picked up travel for Sexton and Dakota, Monster Europe picked up travel for Nathan and myself (since I filmed a Monster edit at Rebel Jam), and Red Bull covered Martinez's travel. Without the help of those companies, the Barcelona trip wouldn't have been realistic or affordable, so I'd like to thank all of those brands for their support. Cinema just covered renting an apartment and the remaining expenses for the team so it worked out great budget wise for us. The main reason we only stayed in Barcelona for four full days was that I have two small kids and ten days is my maximum time I can really be away from my family. Another concern of mine was not knowing what the weather would be like there in December. Planning trips months in advance is always risky knowing that bad weather can ruin productivity, but we couldn't have been any luckier. The sun was shining and it was perfect short sleeve weather every day we rode in Barcelona. Also, I have to give a huge shout out to Fernando, Javi and the BCN crew that took care of us and showed us all the amazing new spots in town. If we didn't have their help, we wouldn't have been nearly as productive, so again, thanks FER!
Was it hard to plan out a European trip with the sole purpose of filming a video, knowing that everyone on the team has other video obligations?
For Cinema projects, I've always told the team guys "let's just go on a trip with the sole purpose of having fun and not stress on footage." This laid back approach seems to be the recipe for successful trips as I always come home with a hard drive full of great clips from everyone. We are still a fairly new and small company compared to the team's other sponsors and I know we can't ask our guys for huge time commitments for big filming projects. But I think the team is a really tight knit crew and they enjoy being on the road together. So I never try to pressure guys into doing trips when I know they're busy working on other filming projects. We have eight dudes on the pro team now so it seems like whenever I'm ready to plan a Cinema trip, I can at least get three or four guys on board that have openings in their schedules. But the Barcelona trip worked because everyone was already going to Rebel Jam. It seems like it's easier to plan Europe trips based around comps that our team guys go to.
How long was the team in Barcelona for?
We were in Barcelona for five days total, but the first day was a chill day since it was the day after Rebel Jam ended and we had to catch an early flight from Amsterdam that morning.
Can you explain your process from start to finish for producing a video of this caliber?
Honestly, it's pretty straight forward. We just pedaled around Barcelona for four solid days with our faithful tour guide, Fernando, showing us amazing spots. With the Cinema crew, I never need to be a cheerleader or babysitter. The team guys are super professional and just really enjoy riding together and I feel really fortunate to get to document all the madness that happens on a daily basis. As cheesy as it sounds, everyone really does feed off each other and it's amazing to sit back and watch Dakota [Roche] do something crazy, then Nathan [Williams] gets motivated and does something else crazy, then Corey [Martinez], then [Sean] Sexton. It's like a chain reaction of positive energy and the guys just having fun riding with each other. Production wise, I filmed most clips with two cameras and keep all the footage organized and backed up on two hard drives until I get home. Then I transfer all the footage to my main computer for the editing. After I finish the rough cut, I normally send out a private link to all the riders involved to make sure they're happy with all the clips I used. Once I get their feedback and approval, I make my final changes, color correct, graphics, sound and master the final video before uploading to our Vimeo channel.
Anything I'm missing here?
Big shout outs to Andy Zeiss, Simon Maudsley and Dave Smidt at Monster Energy, Jerry Badders at Vans, Red Bull, Fernando, Javi, Santiago, Leandro, Daniel, Republica Bike shop, Rapit BMX, and all the locals we met in BCN. Muchos gracias.
Cinema's Barcelona video premieres Wednesday February 29, 2012 on the Cinema website.