Launching a film production company in the most unpredictable year that our industry has faced sounds like a cruel challenge in some new lockdown reality series. Turns out, for Made director Dani Hynes and Producers Mel Curtis and Dumisani Mvumvu it’s challenge accepted. The team weigh in how understanding the obstacles that advertising creatives face and putting relationships first contributed to one of the team’s busiest years.
Q: Did you have any set goals when you first launched Made a year ago?
Dani: To be perfectly honest, our goal was just to be here after one year. You have to make a conscious choice every day to do the little things and lean back on the value system while things are still developing. We set out a goal, very simple, and we are still here and that for me is amazing and it’s testament really to my partners and strong coffee.
Mel: The support we’ve had from the industry has been incredible. We really value the people who have helped us and contributed to the beautiful pictures we take. We haven’t stopped, even throughout lockdown and the festive season, we’ve been very blessed and we’ve also gotten to know each other reeeeaaaaalllly well.
Dumi: Haha you love us Mel! But yeah, it’s always been important to all three of us that we connect with people on a human level first and set out to treat everyone as fair as we can. People value that, especially considering the wild ride the world is going through right now where transparency and relationships have become crucial in sustaining a business. Also, we just flippen love the people we get to work with. I know it sounds cheesy but it’s true.
Dani: Haha, it’s true though. At the end of the day we are all freelancers and being a freelancer in a pandemic is basically like agreeing to be a piranha out of the sea. It’s hard but it’s made easier by people who care and we don’t always get it right but we try and do the same.
Dumi: Piranhas I think are actually freshwater fish…
Dani: Pretty sure they are also in oceans…
Mel: Googling…Definitely freshwater. ‘Rivers, floodplains, lakes and reservoirs.’
Dani: And that is how we keep each other honest!
From Left: Dani Hynes, Dumisani Mvumvu & Mel Curtis
Q: You’ve not only made it through year 1 but you’ve experienced one of the busiest years of your careers, what do you attribute to that?
Dani: Not to be Captain Obvious here, but agencies (and the whole bloody world really) have not had it easy this past year and that the last thing creatives want to hear, especially now, is ‘no’. They want to hear ‘how’, there always has to be a ‘how’. People know that if they climb into the trenches with us, we will come out of it with a solution and it will never feel like it’s plan b.
Mel: I also think that at Made we don’t fit into one category. Whether it’s a comedy spot, children, live-action, animation, doccie style, whatever, for us it’s always been idea-first.
Dumi: Ja listen, if we take on a job we think about that job a thousand percent and our focus is always to make that job the best it can be. We are so committed to our love of what we do that we always try to make the jobs better and more exciting and I like to think people value that.
Made Recently Made This
Dani, Dumi and Mel attribute having worked alongside top agencies like FCB, Metropolitan Republic, Country for Jane, Wolves, Publicis, M&C Saatchi and Havas to having built a reputation for solving problems. But it’s more than that. Even when money and time are a problem on a project, the team is adamant not to make decisions because of those problems, they make decisions that serve the board, taking into account that money and time are problems. For them, it always is and has always been about best serving the idea.
Here are a few of the most recent spots from Made, with Eskort walking away with an award in the Creative Circle ‘Film’ category, boom!
Echinaforce Junior ‘Flower Power’
Eskort Bacon ‘Inga’
Eskort Polony ‘Library’
Catching up with Made we are again reminded of just how much the three love and respect each other, the work and their industry. Also how ridiculously fun they are to be around! We could not be happier that their baby made it to year two and not only that, made it to year two despite the whole piranha out of the freshwater thing! Wanna (s)talk some more? Made on IDIDTHAT and Company Website.
*Images by: Chloe O’Doherty at Kiss Kiss Photography.
Produced by the IDIDTHAT Content Studio – Credits: Anne Hirsch (Writer) / Julie Maunder
*This content may not be reproduced or used in any part without the prior written consent of IDIDTHAT. Reprints must credit I DID THAT.co (ididthat.co) as the original publisher of this editorial piece and include a link to this site.
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