The 11th Advertising Week in New York has seen some serious star power at large and the synergy between advertising, film and cinema, is great to see.
Gaining inspiration from other creative industries in particular, such as music, fashion, books and film can help challenge all of us to push boundaries and innovate.
The highlight of the week for me has been AOL Build's session 'Killer Instincts' where Director David Fincher and Author GIllian Flynn talked about the upcoming blockbuster Gone Girl. I was lucky enough to get a front row seat at this brilliant session and it was fascinating to hear Fincher and Flynn discuss the creative process in bringing the novel to life. For anyone who hasn't read the book or the film, there are some slight spoilers ahead but I don't want to give too much away...
As well as writing the novel, Flynn also wrote the screenplay and was intimately involved in the making of the film. Both talked about an intensely collaborative process, with Fincher describing it as "incessant, belaboured discussion", with constant conversation and refining. He said that the story needed to dictate the action as well as the performances, which is why he is always meticulous about the number of takes he captures so he can get two or three solid versions of each scene, that might be very different.
I asked Flynn what she felt Fincher would bring as a filmmaker to the story. She said she was a huge David Fincher fan, having watched Seven multiple times, as well as all his movies. She also added: "There was a real sense of excitement and relief with David on board. I knew it was in safe hands. He would understand the weird, jagged cul-de-sac of the book and I knew he'd like the darkness, but bring a real of sense of humour to it too."
Fincher said that the 'voice' of the book was of interest to him and the idea that when you first meet someone and fall in love, you put your best side forward and project that, while the person you are seducing is doing the exact same thing. Down the line, whether it's one year, three years or seven years, you become exhausted at being their soulmate, and in this case, there are horrible repurcussions...
As Flynn explained: "To solve the mystery you have to solve the marriage."
Both Flynn and Fincher also discussed the marketing of the film which was challenging due to the desire not to reveal too much of the plot and ensure moviegoers will be surprised and wowed by the film. Fincher talked about the dangerous trend of trailers telling the story of the entire movie: "The key here was to create a trailer that was evocative of the feeling of the movie, without giving too much away."
They concluded by dissecting the creative process in more detail, with Fincher outlining that he believes: "Everyone has a non-specific contribution to make. You have to allow for things that are outside your experience to make their way into the movie. It's a very collaborative process - we were constantly tearing and testing the fabric of the story."
His final thought was one that can apply to all creative industries and advertising in particular: "I believe in creative darwinism, the best ideas come to the fore." The key is to trust in that.