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How Much Did That Video Cost: Geico “It’s What You Do”

“How much does a video cost?” is the most common question we get. So, we’ve asked video creators to identify a video they like and let us know what they thought it would cost to produce. The only catch: IT’S NOT THEIR VIDEO (so all posts are merely an estimate by each video creator on what they thought a similar video might cost). Enjoy the series!

The latest action-packed spot from Geico’s “It’s What You Do” campaign is all about Mom and her unwavering ability to call at the worst possible time, totally oblivious to the circumstances.

The filmmakers did a great job keeping locations to a minimum and using the space they had wisely to tell the story. The video is broken up into two scenes. We have the protagonist’s rooftop chase and Mom, back at home in her living room. Seems to me this was shot in two days. With all the costs associated with the helicopter scene (permissions, regulations, pilot costs etc.), the filmmakers probably wanted to keep that scene to one day. Mom’s scene would easily be shot in a day.

Let’s break down the costs. We have two principal actors with speaking lines. At basic ACTRA rates that works out to about $700 for one day, not including pre-production like rehearsals, wardrobe etc. So let’s calculate it at $2850 weekly. Then we have four other actors involved in the rooftop fight scene at a rate of $1950 for the week. Based on past research, I’d guess the helicopter costs probably netted out somewhere near $3200 for four hours.

Moving on to crew, I would estimate $4,500 for the Director, Producer and DOP for the week. Those squirrels running through Mom’s backyard probably required an animal wrangler on set, unless they were done in CG in which case they paid a CG Artist. Add on hair, makeup, craft, gear rentals, editing, audio, colour, etc. and it would easily round out the budget of this spot to the $60,000 – $65,000 range. This is a lowball guess, since filmmakers are usually good at finding ways to save money.

This is a fun spot that catches your attention with an unrealistic event, then brings it down to earth by tying it into a situation we’ve all been in. The only thing missing was a gecko cameo!

SevenSeas Productions was born with the realization that the world is vast and that there’s talent in every corner. Check out more from them on their Notch Video profile.

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