The Los Angeles Rams leveraged the NFL’s biggest offseason showpiece – the 2022 Draft – with an epic, movie trailer style hype film titled ‘On The Clock’. The tongue-in-cheek, cinematic caper fuses film and sports tropes with quick cuts, funny quips and comic musings
Launched on 26 April, 48 hours ahead of the Draft, the short film was developed by strategy agency Zambezi, creative studio Ventureland and production outfit Prettybird and it was helmed by lifelong Rams fan Paul Hunter with cinematography by three-time Academy Award winner Bob Richardson.
The spot tells how the Rams, who traded away their top Draft picks last season in a strategy that ended with them winning the Super Bowl, plan to steal this year’s Draft. The premise is that, despite having few early round picks due to aggressive deals for stars like Matthew Stafford and Von Miller, the Rams have earned numerous trade and draft ‘steals’ over the years and aim to do so again.
The film features Hollywood stars playing Rams personnel (such as Dennis Quaid as team owner Stan Kroenke, Josh Holloway as General ManagerLes Snead, Scott Eastwood as CoachSean McVay, and Tyrese Gibson as Defensive Co-Ordinator Raheem Morris) as well as appearances from several stars of the defending champion team (including Kendall Blanton, Terrell Burgess, Aaron Donald, Tyler Higbee, Jordan Fuller, Van Jefferson, Cooper Kupp, David Long Jr, Jalen Ramsey, Nick Scott, Ben Skowronek and Matthew Stafford).
Several key scenes in the ‘On The Clock: The House Always Wins’ take place in the team’s Draft House: a team branded space unveiled the previous week which is the successor to the Rams’ 2021′s venue in Malibu and will serve as Rams HQ for certain deals and business transactions during through the end of May.
The hero film and supporting content seek to build buzz ahead of the Draft and drive fans to find out further Draft related Rams information at therams.com/ontheclock and therams.com/draft.
The real blockbuster of the offseason.
— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) April 26, 2022
The campaign spans traditional media outlets with the full length film playing in US cinemas and also lives on Rams’ channels, while 60-, 30- and 15-secondd versions were deployed across social media and supported by digital outdoor and OOH work (led by film poster style executions) and ‘wild postings’.
Rams VP General Manager Of Media Executives Marissa Daly and VP Of Brand Strategy Lexi Vonderlieth, commenting on the campaign, said the idea behind a blockbuster movie approach was to reflect LA’s status as the USA’s film capital and to create something accessible to a mass audience (not just to committed NFL fans).
“It was a crazy few days of filming, trying to fit everything in, but one of our goals was really making it feel like this was a cut-down of a full-length feature film. We wanted all of those locations and that scale of the different scenes, from the quiet moments in the owner’s box to one of our star players repelling out of a helicopter,” explained Vonderlieth. “A fun piece of insider knowledge is that almost everyone you see in the trailer who might normally be cast as an extra is actually a Rams employee. The security guards chasing Super Bowl MVP Cooper Kupp through the hallway is the Rams in-house counsel. The data analyst typing away in the opening of the computer scene is Rams CMO Kathryn Kai-ling Frederick. All the students in Aaron Donald’s math class are Rams employees.”
The campaign was created for an LA Rams marketing team led by Chief Marketing Officer Kathryn Kai-ling Frederick, Chief Commercial Officer Jennifer Prince, VP Brand Strategy Lexi Vonderlieth, VP/GM Media & Rams Studios Marissa Daly, Executive Creative Director Eric Kaufman, VP Corporate Affairs Joanna Hunter, VP Marketing Strategy and Operations Margaret Plouffe, VP Legal Todd Davis, Player Marketing Emma McVay, Strategy & Operations Manager Rams Studios Michelle Runch, Photography Lead Brevin Townsell and Brand Strategy Manager Rachel Zisman.
Creative Strategy was by a group at agency Zambezi which included Senior Director Of Partnership Marketing Brittany Ramos, Director Of Partnerships Tyler Potts, Senior Creative Director Cory Befort, Manager Retail Marketing Gabe Jimenez, Coordinator Retail Marketing Maddie Bridges, Manager Marketing Strategy & Operations Cameron Malakoff and Manager Corporate Communications Chase Isaacs.
The team working on the project at creative studio Ventureland included CEO Kerstin Emhoff, President Ali Brown, Creative Director Mike Rosen, Executive Producer Natasha Wellesley, Creative Consultant/Co-Writer Susanna Fogel, Co-Writer Zander Coté,, Producer Marissa Mackel and Director of Production Tracy Hauser.
At production company PrettyBird the team included Director Paul Hunter,
Director of Photography Robert Richardson, Producer Jeff Tanner, Director of Production Tracy Hauser, Head of Production Rika Osenberg, Production Designer Justin Dragonas and Production Supervisor Brian Lierk.
Editorial was by Monster Creative, Colour was handled through Conpany3, Audio by Stampede, music by Phantom Power Music and Sound Design, visual effects by Stampede Post and footage and image research by The Director Studio.
Might this just be the greatest hype video in the history of the NFL? Probably not, but it sure is entertaining.
This work follows on not only from the team’s home stadium Super Bowl win, but also from its 2021 ‘Draft House’ campaign with sponsor Rocket Mortgage.
The three-day, 2022 NFL Draft takes place in Las Vegas on 28, 29 and 30 April.