John Lithgow, a Bubble Baby and the Super Black Hole at the Center of Our Galaxy

These are just a few of the pieces that went into a video series created by 160over90West.

Last week, UCLA launched its Centennial Campaign—a five year push to raise $4.2 billion leading up to their 100th anniversary in 2019. An ambitious goal for an even more ambitious university. That’s because UCLA can make the claim that no other higher education institution has achieved, innovated or impacted the world more in such a short period of time.

Imagine what it can do in its next century.

We capitalized on that notion with ’Let There Be …’ an open-ended play off the the school motto of ‘Let There Be Light’ that serves as an invitation to be a part of defining that future for us all.

As one of the very few top tier institutions that is truly public, we wanted to capture the idea that UCLA’s story is not UCLA’s alone. It belongs to all of us. Everyone has a voice. Everyone has a stake.

We created a video series to bring the Centennial story to life in a tangible, emotive way. Who better to tell it than the everyday citizens of LA and California whose lives are being affected by UCLA each and every day? This approach allowed us to speak to UCLA’s achievements and innovation—which at times can be technical and hard to grasp—in a voice that is more relatable, more inclusive, more “we” than “us.”

The main video reminds the LA community that UCLA is not a bubble of academia. It touches every inch of the city, state and beyond. John Lithgow narrates.

From a baby born without an immune system to honoring our veterans through actions instead of just words, UCLA is figuratively and literally reshaping lives. With such great human interest stories, we cut a series of videos that offer a deeper dive into these individual stories.

The Team
Creative Director: Kyle Arango
Account Supervisor: Marcus Clark-Black
Account Director: Isaac Bodenhamer
VP/Executive Creative Director: Tammo Walter
Director of Client Services: Megan Pomplas
Copywriter: Kyle Arango
Designer:  Bryan Hill
Project Manager: Anna Mumford
Agency Producer: Tom Ammon
Production Company: Neighborhood Film Co
Executive Producer: Kris Barton
Director: Anders Lindwall
DP: Hunter Hampton
Editor: Dominic Liang
Producer: David Martinez
VO: John Lithgow


The making of “We. Make. Believe.” for the Atlantic 10 Conference.
This wasn’t our first national TV spot. But no matter if it’s for a Grand Slam, the world’s most applied-to university, an NFL franchise, or in this case—a college athletic conference—every time is sort of a first time in its own kind of way. And on this type of project there are moments when everything can feel like it’s up in the air until the spot finally goes on air. But once it does, like it did last night, it’s surreal. It’s like one final big group check-in. Just like we’ve all sat in together countless nights before. Only this screen isn’t attached to our computer. This feed is beaming down from a satellite. Those are our words. Those are our edits. And effects. And suddenly, it is very, very real.

Pulling it off, takes a lot.

It takes a client willing to take risks and trusting enough to cooperate.
It takes the URL we wanted to somehow be available for $12.99.
It takes flexibility, and it takes patience.

Because when you work on something that you care about so much, so closely and so intensely, there’s inevitably gonna be some friction. This project was no different. It saw CCO* vs. CD, CD vs. Editor, and Editor vs. the state of Texas.** And through it all, we stood, together—just like we did last night.

So back to last night, anyway. Here’s the spot:

It was a long winding road getting there. It started with five of us packed into the back of a van for an all day shoot in Richmond, Virginia. From there it was up to NYC to record VO with artist Saul Williams who you may know from this, this, or…that. Next up, RJD2 hopped on-board to mix the track.

Wall of A-10 work at 160over90.

The A-10 wall at 160over90.

160over90's film crew

Setting up to shoot at VCU’s Siegel Center.

Shooting at The Palestra.

Shooting some dusty banners at The Palestra.

All along we were shooting whenever we could find a window into the busy lives of the A-10’s student-athletes. They are the ones who this spot truly starts and ends with.

These students play on the biggest stages in college sports while graduating at a higher rate than most of the big-name teams they beat regularly out on the court. But somehow that’s not the story. Somehow, they’re not America’s favorite collection of teams. Well, not yet anyway. Because now we’re helping them tell their story to a wider audience: that winning doesn’t mean having to lose what you stand for.

Over the past several months we’ve all become big fans of the A-10. Along the way we realized we share something in common. Whether it’s producing a national spot, earning the grades, or playing late into March—for us, the most important project is the one that lies in front. And then the Next one.

** The Lone Star State may have won, but Max’s mustache remains undefeated.
* Canada Dry lost a good one.

Agency: 160over90
Chief Executive Officer: Shannon Slusher
Chief Creative Officer: Darryl Cilli
Executive Creative Director: Jim Walls
Director of Client Services: John Campanella
Creative Director: Timothy O’Donnell
Digital Creative Director: Konstantinos Psimaris
Copywriter: Kris Blake
Motion Designers: Chris Lee, Joe Dunlap
Video Editor: Max Paolucci
Executive Producer: Tom Ammon
Producer: Nick Pitcavage
Designers: Nick O’Brien, Dan Kent
Project Manager: Jamie MacNamara
Account Directors: Lindsay White, Andy Starr
Account Executive: Jasmine Rupert
Web Developer: Cameron Baney
Sound Design: Tom Lebeau
Musical Score: RJD2
Voice-Over: Saul Williams

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