We were commissioned by Pyay Garden Residence in downtown Yangon to create a promotional film to showcase their luxury apartments. This high-rise building offers luxury facilities for a comfortable lifestyle and has wide range of amenities in each apartment as well as a communal lobby. We also showcased particular features such as the bar, swimming pool, restaurant, beauty and health spa, gym and children’s’ playroom.
For this shoot we began by liaising with the client, who arranged two models to be our on-camera talent and a chaperoned child for the playroom shots. On our first day we conducted an afternoon / evening location scout or “recce” and began by shooting some time-lapses of the Yangon sunset from the roof of the building and completed some drone flights around the exterior with our trusty DJI Phantom 4.
Next we spent a full day shooting empty interiors of two purpose-dressed apartments along with the other facilities. The weather proved to be a real challenge as we had tropical rain all day and we had to work around this, but luckily we had planned for this and had deliberately started with our exteriors on the sunniest day – it always pays to check the weather forecast. We also had the challenge that some of the tower’s facilities were still under construction and we had to avoid showing these, but we are very pleased that you can’t tell this from the finished film.
On day three we had the two models at our disposal to play our glamorous couple. We staged several scenes with them interacting with the Residence’s employees, such as showing them entering the lobby and checking in, enjoying a drink at the bar, visiting the gym and restaurant, and of course entering their stunning apartment. The weather was still wet for this whole day as well, so balcony views were out of the question, which the client had hoped could be the final shot to sell the apartments’ amazing view. So how do you show a classy couple admiring the beautiful city view from their balcony when you have pouring rain?
As our schedule and budget didn’t allow for an extra day, we hit upon the idea of shooting the couple against a green wall in the restaurant, pretending to look at the view. Back in the edit bay, we were able to remove the green wall and turn the couple into a silhouette. Then we could add in our time-lapse from our first day behind them as the view of the city and sunset from the balcony. This added an extra layer of interest to what could have been a pretty generic shot – you have the relaxed, slow-moving couple in the foreground and the fast-paced city behind them. The client loved this creative approach to the final shot, and you would never know it had been created from necessity because it had been raining. Sometimes filmmaking has to be about improvisation to get a great result!