A client commissioned me to direct a commercial for a clothing line, and then asked me to write a concept because they couldn’t afford a copywriter. I submitted a concept which was about a girl and a piano. Two months went by and not a word about the commercial.

Then I got this phone call:

Client: You’re shooting your commercial in two days. We got you a model for the shoot.

Me: Two days? The boards aren’t even made.

Client: You make them.  

Me: Okay. Can she play the piano? Half the commercial is her playing the piano.

Client: No, she’s a model.

Me: But is she a model who can play the piano?

Client: No.

Me: You’re saying that our commercial which involves a girl playing a piano has a girl who can’t play the piano?

Client: You can fake it to music in post.

Me: What music, I haven’t had time to pick any music.

Client: I’ll pick the music after the shoot.

Me: We need to know what music we’re using if she’s going to mimic it.

Client: No it’ll be fine, she doesn’t. You said you needed a piano right?

Me: For the piano playing, yes. It’s all on the list, HR has a copy.

Client: Okay, I’ll book it. Anything else I need to book? I got you two cars.

Me: What about the car mount?

Client: Wait, do you want the car mount or the cars? Make up your mind.

Me: Why would I want a car mount without a car? Both. I still need to approve the girl, the wardrobe, props, etc.

Client: I’ll do it, you don’t need to know about it. I’ll see what I can change on the list.

Me: When are we shooting this?

Client: Friday. Shut up for a second.

He puts me on hold. Five minutes later…

Me: So you’re saying that nothing is ready for the shoot that’s in less than 36 hours?

Client: That’s none of your business, just shoot it, we’ve got a good location, you’ll see it on Friday.

He hangs up.

Thursday afternoon I learnt nothing had actually been booked, including the model and location. Thursday night, the shoot was cancelled.