Sunday, August 31, 2008

Malibu Boats Pushing Limits at the 2009 DVD Shoot

The 2009 Malibu Boats DVD Shoot went off last week at Lake Don Pedro in California. The temperatures were in the 100's and we were on fire getting amazing footage of 12 2009 Malibu boats in four days. We captured High Definition footage on three cameras with a small group of crew and talent. The high level of production resulting from the shoot was a direct result of the Malibu factory team, camera crew and pro athletes who attended the event. We saw these people raise their game to get the job done and the footage we have in the can is a shinning example of this effort.

Take a look at some of the behind-the-scenes images in the Malibu Boats 2009 DVD Shoot Flickr gallery.

The Malibu Factory Team roster included photo shoot veteran, camera boat driver and R&D engineer, Shane Stillman. I would compare Shane's performance at these shoots to competing in the Iron Man. He begins the morning at 5am driving the camera boat for about 5 hours. Then he spends the middle part of the day swimming boats around for jibs shots. The end of the day, which is around dark, is filled with launching and trailering boats as well as helping to prepare for the evening's shots. This guy never stops. He prepares for the DVD shoot weeks ahead of time and cleans up for days afterward. Shane puts as much energy and effort into special events like the DVD shoot as he does the interior design of Malibu boats.

We were also supported by other Malibu factory personnel like Tyler Grise, Adam Perez from Marketing and Steve Frietas from R&D. These guys went where ever they were needed, from cleaning and driving boats to posing for the camera to making gas, food and ice runs. Tyler also helped Shane swim most days, he was relived by Adam and Steve when he was needed elsewhere. These Malibu Team members stuck it out until the very end, even staying to clean the houseboat, the day after the shoot. You won't find more dedicated, hard-working employees in the marine industry.

Even the Malibu women got into the act at Lake Don Pedro last week. Daisy Gonsalves and Tisha Schortzmann, who work in Customer Service and oversee the sales of Malibu-branded merchandise, got up well before the sun every morning and still managed to look beautiful and happy in the boats. When these two weren't on the water they were helping clean the houseboat and preparing meals. They are awesome team players. Nicolette D'Heilly, one of the Malibu Boats receptionists, also helped out.

Ellery Sanchez in Marketing and Sylvia Juarez in Human Resources helped us get ready for the shoot. Ellery handles all of the pre-shoot logistics including permits talent coordination and insurance, while Sylvia helped with the huge task of shopping for our crew.

Mark Gibbs, Malibu's Northwest Sales Manager, not only ran himself raged driving and trailering boats he also did his time in front of the camera. Mark, his wife Cindy and their 4-year-old daughter Zoe were filmed in and around the DVD boats as well as speaking on camera about the boats. This Malibu family is on the road quite a bit, yet they still found time to come and help us out. We can't thank them enough for all they did last week. The results of their excitement and dedication to Malibu is evident in the footage we captured. Thanks Gibbs Family!

It's one thing to see this level of production from Malibu employees. This kind of work ethic is old news when we are talking about Malibu Boats. It's quite another phenomenon to see a group of independent contractors and companies put forth Malibu's brand of effort at a video shoot. This type of production speaks to the caliber of people Malibu Boats chooses to work with. Charles White from Mtek Studios, Mark Bame and Eric Jeffocat form Bump Films, Jack Hodgkins and Robert Beland made up the Malibu Boats 2009 DVD camera crew.

Robert Beland, who has been shooting video for Malibu Boats since our first DVD was produced in 1999, is an accomplished sports cameraman who loves to wakeboard. He is invited to the Malibu DVD each year because of his amazing talent to get great shots the first time and because he is a good guy who keeps us laughing. Robert is not your typical cameraman. This year, after he worked his behind off all day in the blazing sun capturing amazing footage, Robert finished the day barbecuing his famous chicken and mixing up salad for our dinner. And when he's between shots throughout the day, Beland drives boats, swims boats, he helps no matter what the situation.

The rest of the camera crew works up to this same level. Jack Hodgkins runs the jib and aside from schooling us all on diet, he's in great shape, he is also a team player. Between jib shots Jack was in the boat with us cleaning. No, that's not a misprint. Jack is one of the first to grab a towel and can of window cleaner to attack some windshield smudges or jump in a boat and wipe a spot from the upholstery. He does what needs to be done, like we all do. And we eat a lot better when Jack is around.

Charles White, who produces the Malibu DVD, empowers his crew to make decisions and be creative. That is one of the reasons we have such an amazing DVD to hand out at boat shows. Charles is also a very good friend of Malibu Boats and works with us through out the year on a variety of projects. He furthers the team work on this kind of shoot be helping out where help is needed. In the kitchen, on the dock, Charles is as much there to lend a hand as he is to create a fun and informative DVD.

Seasoned water sports video producers Mark Bame and Eric Jeffcoat from Bump Films have also worked with Malibu Boats for a number of years. These guys do whatever it takes to get the shot. Mark is the Camera AC in the morning, in the water shooting driver-bys during the middle of the day and on a tube shooting riders in the afternoon. He never stops... Eric is the cameraman shooting boat details and there are quite a few in our boats. He does that in the morning and then assists with the jib camera in the afternoon.

Finally, we have to mention the pro athletes who make us look so good. They show off the water sports capabilities of Malibu boats on the DVD. And this year we invited pro riders Nick Jones and Kevin Henshaw to the shoot. These guys both went off behind the boats! Check out the behind-the-scenes photos of the Kevin riding.

And because we choose to work with athletes who have as much character as they do talent, it shouldn't surprise anyone to find out that the riders at this year's DVD shoot did much more than ride. Nick and Kevin were an extension of the crew. They drove boats, puts boats on trailers, filled and emptied ice chests and helped clean up. Both of them were always asking what more they could do to help. This attitude is why they are part of the Malibu family.

This is a long post just to recap a photo shoot, but we feel it is important to share the stories of the people of Malibu Boats. It's not just about the boats. Malibu Boats is built on amazing people. Big projects like the 2009 DVD give us an opportunity push our own limits as well as the limits of the media. We've grown closer and stronger thanks to these efforts and you will have a better DVD because of this. Look for the 2009 Malibu Boats DVD at a dealership or a boat show near you this winter.

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