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Producing a death defying rock & roll video with Sophie Brooks
The Script's "Man on a Wire" pushed the limits of what a band is willing to risk to make art. Producer Sophie Brooks made certain that the band and director realized their vision without losing anyone's life in the process; a tall order for this particular video.

The public has become so used to the utilization of CGI effects and software trickery that when truly incredible visuals are presented, ones manifested in the "practical" way, it becomes a stunning moment.

This most certainly applies to rock band The Script's "Man on a Wire" video. Rejecting the idea of using computers to manifest images of the band suspended on tightrope's and the side of buildings, the band and director Frank Borin defied conventionality, common sense/self-preservation fear, and budgets to achieve a remarkable array of visuals for this video. To ensure that everything occurred safely and within the artistic vision, producer Sophie Brooks was brought aboard. A globe-trotting professional with more than ample experience in South Africa (Brooks is a UK native), Sophie helped to deliver this video production to its awe inspiring results.

Numerous times director Frank Borin had been told by other producers and production companies that the premise for the video was impossible. That was before meeting Brooks. In addition to the daredevil performances of The Script, "Man on a Wire" required helicopters and shutting down main streets in Cape Town. The Script's lead singer Danny O'Donoghue was suspended between two skyscrapers while various members of the band are suspended from buildings in Cape Town's Central Business District. Sophie reveals, "Creating something this daring is never easy. The insurance on this video was a nightmare. In fact, on this project I was boarding a plane from London to Brazil when the label told me the insurance was under discussion in terms of liability for this stunt. We had a tense few hours figuring out who and how to cover such a stunt. It all worked out well and everyone was covered. I had the worst flight ever trying to figure this out with no internet but we managed to solve it to everyone's satisfaction."

One never wants to act expeditiously when dealing with potential safety issues but when you do, it's optimal to have a producer like Sophie guiding the ship. The Script was on tour and had a very limited time to film the music video. Brooks had a curt two weeks to plan, organize, and ensure every detail was perfectly in place. In this case, the outcome was (no pun intended) hanging on her expertise. With only one rehearsal day and one shoot day, The Script took their positions atop the tallest buildings of Cape Town. It's a vertigo inducing experience simply to watch "Man on a Wire." From the pan out in the opening scene with lead singer O'Donoghue on a tightrope between two skyscrapers, guitarist Mark Sheehan hanging vertically (feet first) on the side of another, or drummer Glen Power seated on the very edge of a roof with the tops of towers beneath and behind him, it's obvious the dangerous lengths which the entire production undertook. It's worth mentioning that Cape Town was selected in part due to their being one of the only cities willing to allow such a precarious video to be filmed there. 

"Man on a Wire" became not only one of The Script's biggest hits songs but the video shared this notoriety. Google yields about 16,300,000 results for "man on a wire script shoot" and the video itself has nineteen million views on YouTube. We all like to believe in serendipity but when dealing with a video such as "Man on a Wire", expertise and precision is a more appropriate description of what made Sophie so ideal for this project. Her attention to detail, her association with Robot Films, and her staunch work ethic are the components which made Borin and band able to achieve their artistic vision with massive success. 

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