Thinkmodo Builds A “Real” Underwater Nightclub To Promote TechnoMarine Watches [Interview]


Imagine an underwater nightclub.  That’s what TechnoMarine watches asks you to do with a new viral video campaign that showcases an Underwater Nightclub in NYC.

In the video, which hit YouTube yesterday morning, we glide through a fully underwater club where bathing suit-clad patrons chat, take photos, dance, play harpoon darts and drink through waterproof helmets.

Who’s behind this campaign?  Well, it’s certainly reminiscent of other NYC-based viral video campaigns and hoaxes like the Times Square hack for Limitless, naked gaming parties, the guy cutting of a parking meter to promote In Time, and the flying people Chronicle campaign, all of which were created by viral video powerhouse Thinkmodo.  Thinkmodo’s Michael Krivicka confirmed that yes, indeed, Thinkmodo is behind the campaign.  He answered a few questions about the campaign via email:

Megan at Social Times: How did you guys come up with the idea?

Michael Krivicka: TechnoMarine, a Geneva based luxury watch brand, challenged us to create a unique marketing video to promote their new waterproof watches.  They asked for something fun, cool, and original.  Since their watches are waterproof, illuminate in low light conditions and since they wanted something “cool” and “fun” we figured we would create an environment that would address all of these things.  So somehow we ended up pitching the world’s first underwater nightclub to them.  They loved it.

How the heck did you make it?!

This has been our craziest production yet.

First, we had to find a place that had a deep enough pool with the right filtration system for visibility issues (you can’t just use a public pool for this kind of a shoot).  There was only one pool on the east coast that worked for us.  It was Survival Systems in Groton, CT.  It’s a military training facility.  They were pretty pumped once we told them what we were going to do.

Second, we had to find a place that can build a set for an underwater shoot.  That means that most fabrication studios didn’t qualify because we couldn’t use materials commonly used to build sets (such as wood, paint, etc.) because it would dissolve in water and/or float.  We ended up going with Mystic Scenic.  They designed and built the environment for us (walls, bar, lighting, etc.).  It came out totally awesome.

Third, we needed to figure out a way for people to breathe down there.  That was kind of a biggie.  So we tracked down the only company in the US that builds these custom breathing helmets.  They are called Sea Trek and are based in California.  They flew out here for the shoot and brought a bunch of their helmets with them.  Our talent had a blast with those.  We used real navy guys and casted people with swimming and diving experience for this.  They pretty much didn’t want to leave and just wanted to stay down there.

Once we assembled our own Avengers for this mission, we then had to find the perfect underwater photography place to capture this insanity for us.  We turned to Air Sea Land for it.  They were absolute pros and shot the entire video over two days on a RED camera.  It came out beautiful.

What has the response been like so far?

The responses so far are all over the place.  Many viewers think that you can’t hear the music and you can’t communicate with people underwater through those helmets, which is not true.  The helmets actually do come with optional communication devices so people can talk to each other.  The pool had a speaker system, which we used to communicate with the divers and our DP, but you can play music through it as well.

Many think it’s the coolest thing ever while others are concerned with how to go to the bathroom down there.  You just get out of the pool, do your thing, and come back in.

The nightclub is not real.  It is a concept creation.  For us it is a unique and fresh way to promote a luxury watch brand that specializes in waterproof watches.  The club is an imagines place that really could exist with today’s technology.  Pressurized drinking containers and underwater housing for iPhones are nothing new.  For 3 days – during our production period – this place really existed.  I was down there and it was the coolest thing ever.

Megan O’Neill is the resident web video enthusiast here at Social Times.  Megan covers everything from the latest viral videos to online video news and tips, and has a passion for bizarre, original and revolutionary content and ideas.

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