Gifted Youth, Optimus Editor Nate Cali Team On Brady Center To Prevent Gun Violence PSA
A baby crawling at home about to put his hand in a bear trap. A little girl runs toward a sliding patio door to pet wolves who are on the other side of the glass. These situations you’d never put a child in are then juxtaposed with an unlocked gun being in a dresser drawer, readily accessible to untrained youngsters who could mistake it for a toy--a potentially tragic scenario.
These are the scenes that unfold in “Dangerous Home,” a PSA for the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. A creative team at Gifted Youth, including producer Alistair Walford, directed the compelling spot which was cut by Optimus editor Nathan Cali. “Dangerous Home” is airing nationally and online at TalkAboutGuns.org.
“Nearly 50 children and teens are shot in this country each day,” said Dan Gross, president of the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence. “Unfortunately, it isn’t too hard to believe when you consider that more than 1.7 million American kids live under the same roof as a loaded, unlocked gun. As this PSA illustrates, parents are superheroes who protect their children from all kinds of danger. And guns are no different. The big takeaway here is that parents can help ensure their children’s safety even when they are not at home by asking if there are unlocked guns in the homes where their kids play. And while the safest thing for parents is to not have a gun in the home at all, it is vital that those who choose to keep one take simple steps to securely lock their weapons, with ammunition stored separately.”
Gifted Youth and Optimus aimed to create a PSA that would not be so frightening as to alienate parents. The music is upbeat and the family scenes are instantly relatable – a little girl giggling while running through the house, a toddler with his toys, and a baby crawling on the floor. But jarring images such as a pack of wolves, barbed wire and a bear trap bring home the point that such items do not belong near children and neither does an unlocked and loaded gun.
“We’ve worked with Optimus on a number of projects and knew they would understand how to help put a spot together that would reach people regarding gun safety without alienating them – something that would start a conversation rather than drawing a line in sand,” said Walford. “As a group, we are proud to work on a spot that will hopefully have a positive influence on the lives of the people around us.”
“Optimus has worked with the team at Gifted Youth in the past on comedic projects, so taking on serious subject matter was a departure from our typical collaborations,” commented Cali. “I was incredibly impressed by the concept they developed and felt they instinctively created a very impactful spot that will resonate with parents and save lives.”
Client The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence Production/Creative Dal Wolf, executive producer; Nick Wiger, writer; Alistair Walford, producer; David Robert Jones, DP; Kate Bunch, production designer. Editorial Optimus Nathan Cali, editor; Annie Rosick, producer; Andrew Henry, assistant editor. Animal Trainer (wolves) Steve Martin’s Working Wildlife Performers Abigail Barr, Judah Davila, Rye McNeely, Jaydon Gaultney