Thursday, 9 April 2015


How not to make a promotional video - French and Saunders eat your heart out.

Debbie Summerfield was now running our sales office. She was the third member of our group on our first Goa holiday in 1992 but with a newborn she was unable to come again to Goa to familiarize herself with the properties - a slight disadvantage as “Head of Sales UK”. So when Bob Vingo (second cousin twice removed) came out that first season armed with a video camera it was too good an opportunity to miss. We decided to make a little video for Debbie.
We are all familiar with the business training videos John Cleese’s company Video Arts made, How NOT to Run a Meeting, How NOT to Impress Customers. We were just about to make How NOT to make a Promotional Video.
Totally unplanned we met Bob at D’Costa House and decided the best way to do it was a walk through video room by room. Standing side by side on the entrance steps cameras poised, no script, just by the seat of our pants we started.
Faced with a rolling camera I panicked and started babbling on like a scene from Who’s Line is it Anyway? Linda’s head swiveled in amazement at what was coming out and whilst I spouted forth moving from room to room she trotted behind me transfixed.
The result was hilarious.
It looked like a scene from Acorn Antiques with forgotten lines and moving scenery. The sleepy village of Para, where most of the time all you could hear was the swishing of the odd water buffalo tail, sounded like it was on the M25 close to Gatwick. Whoever would have known that the occasional little scooter putt putting past would sound like a Ferrari and that the idly turning ceiling fans would sound like helicopters overhead. All my impromptu dialogue was totally drowned out so it looked like we were miming anyway!!!
Scarred for life from this first experience we have turned down many opportunities for media appearances over the years. No, I am wrong. There was the interview about how to cook chicken cafreal for a cookery programme that was aired on Somerset Radio but that’s a whole other story.
We have since registered as French and Saunders Lookie Likies and are now available for weddings and bar mitzvahs (no prizes for which one is which).

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