Easter Seals PSA in Partnership with VFT
By JIM FABIO
Last fall, based on a concept I had submitted along with more than 50 of my VFT peers, I was selected to write and direct a national public service announcement for Easter Seals Dixon Center. I was told there were some pretty solid concepts and ideas considered, but that I had struck a chord with the Easter Seals reps and their ad agency with my spot concept about a veteran who had no qualms about meeting all the challenges he might encounter in the corporate world save one … what to wear to work each day.
One of the benefits of being selected was having an opportunity to meet with one of the greatest comedic minds of our time - Judd Apatow. In February I met Judd at Sony Pictures Studios in Culver City, where he let me sit in on an audio editing session for his new film Trainwreck. When he finished his work, we sat outside and talked about my military career and some of the projects he’s been working on that have a military connection. He was pretty stoked that Rob Riggle had committed to being in the PSA, and he offered some advice about directing comedic actors. It was very cool that he took time out of his day to help ensure the success of the Easter Seals spot and to show his commitment to helping veterans in the industry
Our shoot day in February was action packed, with a cast and crew featuring more than 20 veterans, most notably Rob Riggle, a 23-year veteran of the Marine Corps. Rob was great to have on board. He was easy to work with, and his rising star lent real credibility to the spot and to the message we were trying to help Easter Seals share - that former military members bring a lot to the table when it comes to employment in the civilian sector.
It was a real pleasure getting to work with so many talented vets who helped bring the concept to life, and I’m grateful to VFT and Easter Seals for the opportunity to stretch my creative wings into the short-form ad production world.