The Inside Story

Bloomberg’s new European headquarters in the City of London opened in October 2017 with great fanfare. A Norman Foster designed building, it had already been rated Outstanding under the BREEAM assessment method for Sustainability, and later would win the RIBA Stirling Prize, 2018.

The building’s impressive stone, bronze and glass exterior was designed to fit in with its historic surroundings - no small task given its proximity to the Bank of England, The Royal Exchange and Mansion House - but many key features of this ‘office of the future’ were out of view on the inside.

Shortly after the building opened we were invited to produce a film that showed how staff had settled in to their new HQs and captured their reactions to some of its extraordinary interior design features.
The Brief
Our video agency had been working with Bloomberg since soon after ground was broken on the site of their new HQs in 2014. From the sinking of the piles to the grand opening, we had been there to capture footage of key processes and events and then shaped this material into videos for Bloomberg’s communications team. These videos, for internal and external messaging, touched on a range of subjects including the facade, sustainability, the archaeological finds, art and the public realm. We had even produced a 45 minute documentary for Bloomberg TV.

Now that the building was open there was an opportunity to capture a story that focused on the people for whom it was built: Bloomberg’s London staff. The brief was that employees would take the viewer on a guided tour through the building, highlighting key features along the way, handing the baton from one to another as they moved deeper into the office.

The video needed to reflect Bloomberg’s commitment to diversity, draw out salient information about design, function and sustainability and, above all, to feel authentic and engaging.
Bloomberg the Inside Story video Aerial Shot Bloomberg the Inside Story Presenter
Bloomberg the Inside Story video Floorplan graphic Bloomberg the Inside Story Interior Shot
Our Approach
If a video production company could have a headstart on a project, this was it. We knew every inch of the building. After all, we’d been there when it existed as an architectural plan and no more than a hole in the ground.

We worked closely with Bloomberg to map out a route through the building for the tour, to decide on the key features that were to be mentioned and to pick a cast of employees who would appear as on-screen talent. We agreed that the video shouldn’t feel overly scripted, but recognised that this was more about the tone of the script than ad libbing on the day. Crucially we’d be asking contributors to break the Fourth Wall, that is look right down the lens to deliver their line. It’s a big ask and tough to pull off with non-actors, but the reward is that it feels very direct, engaging and sincere.

After the script was approved we worked on the schedule and the crewing. We felt that using two crews, each with one camera on a gimbal and one on tripod, would give us the most flexibility. Each unit had a Director, a 1st AD, an Assistant Producer, a DoP, a 1st AC and a 2nd AC, a gimbal operator, a sound recordist and video assist, while both were served by a DIT, runners, wardrobe and hair & make-up.

In the edit the employee to-camera shots were mixed with broll footage including helicopter aerials of the building, motion-control timelapse of the surrounding area, sweeping jib shots and twisting dolly shots alongside simple graphic overlays that explained sometimes complex ideas.

We developed a split screen approach and injected pace into the narrative with ramped (sped-up) shots that quickly joined one presenter to the next while taking in the journey through the building.

The glue binding the video together were top & tail Pieces to Camera shot on location with Francine Laqua, Anchor & Editor-At-Large Bloomberg TV, and her voice-over recorded later in a central-London studio.
The Results
A brand, some say, is an agglomeration of stories linked together by a vision.

Bloomberg’s employees delivered their own micro-stories that together told the viewer what Bloomberg the company stands for, what it’s vision amounts to - all through the prism of their new London HQs.

As the video unfolded the viewer learned that it’s a building that sets new standards for sustainability and innovation, energizes employees, clients and visitors, encourages a new level of productivity and collaboration and raises the bar for future office buildings around the world.

The cherry on the cake? A low-key cameo from Michael Bloomberg himself.
Bloomberg the Inside Story The Vortex Bloomberg the Inside Story Express Lifts
Bloomberg The Inside Story
Bloomberg The Inside Story
Bloomberg The Inside Story
Guide to Construction Video Production
Corporate Video Production

If you're looking to commission a corporate video for your business, there's a few ways we can help with the process.

First, think about the kind of video you want to make, is it a talking head interview, an animated explainer video, are you looking to film a customer success story or case study video with one of your clients?

We've put together a range of resources to help you think about your video strategy and what your approach to video production should be. It includes links to pages which will help you understand how video productions are budgeted, what the video production process is from planning, to filming, to editing and post-production, and you'll find helpful information about different formats and getting your video out on social media.

Click here for our client video production resource pages


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