Behind the Scenes: Touring the Streets of London on Motorbike for Royal Enfield

FAMILIA director Adriaan Louw on capturing energy and authenticity for Royal Enfield Hunter 350

Behind the Scenes: Touring the Streets of London on Motorbike for Royal Enfield

Celebrating Royal Enfield's heritage in the UK, the latest spot directed by FAMILIA's Adriaan Louw, showcases the brand's history while welcoming modern day riders into the community. Following this new generation of riders through the streets of London, the film captures raw, authentic moments in documentary-style and highlights the diverse community the brand attracts. In this interview, Adriaan takes us behind the scenes on how this dynamic spot came together to hail a new generation of motorcyclists.

LBB> The Royal Enfield work covers a brief history of the brand in the UK - how did you go about condensing such a rich history down into one spot?

Adriaan> When I first read the agency brief I got immediately excited.

I loved the challenge of getting a new generation of riders into motorcycling. Using Royal Enfield's heritage in the UK struck me as a smart way to do this, and with brick lanes, deep history with Indian culture, it felt like a perfect marriage.

LBB> Recognising that the category of motorcycles has often been seen as insular and out of touch. You were keen to evolve this perception, focusing on the key elements of community, energy, and authenticity.

Can you talk us through this concept and process?

Adriaan> Something I discovered during my research stage of my treatment was that the motorcycle category felt very out of touch with the times. I was so excited to bring new life to the world of motorbikes. One of the ways in which I achieved this was by bringing together a cast that felt like they have been friends for a while.

A lot of marketing aimed at this generation is cool and edgy but can often come across as uninviting. So with this spot I wanted to convey that the community welcomes people with open arms. That's where the authenticity came through, along with the natural interactions on set. 

This energy was influenced by my earlier work - a background in documentary work, capturing skateboarding, music and culture allowed similar directing styles to be used here but on a larger scale. That's what excites me about filmmaking - when you allow for the unexpected to unfold.

LBB> On a technical level, how did you achieve the look and feel of the spot?

Adriaan> Before my life as a commercials director, I spent years touring with artists, making documentaries around the world exploring culture through film. All of this was a very run and gun in approach and I wanted to harness this look and feel for the Royal Enfield film.

Taking that run and gun documentary approach but with access to toys like a techno crane on the back of a vehicle made for an interesting combination. An elevated, authentic and relatable end product. But I also wanted the images to still stay true to my way of capturing movement - we made sure the camera was always moving as I wanted the audience to feel like they were on a motorcycle too to really encapsulate the experience.

We shot on 16mm film and the way we approached the camera all played into the final look and feel to give it a sense of realness. The final piece's cinematography still feels natural. 

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LBB> What were your personal favourite moments from filming?

Adriaan>  My favourite moments were the riding shots. Even though it can be stressful at the time and you wonder if you're getting everything you need, a little bit of chaos can be enjoyable!

Due to not being able to close roads, thanks to London's lengthy permitting time, we had some very busy roads to contend with. But this only added to the realism we needed for the film. I also loved being able to work on the stills for this campaign as well as the film.

LBB> What is your favourite scene from the spot and why?

Adriaan> There were some scenes where the lighting was coming through perfectly in 30 degree sunshine.

Then at the end of the day we were lucky enough to catch the light starting to peek through the side of a cloud, when we shot a final shot over this bridge, shooting on film stock that's actually not right for that scene but we were in the moment and didn't want to lose the light. So we just went with it and it ended up being my favourite shot.  I was sitting on the back of a big truck when we were filming this, with the light shining perfectly and London in the background, and it just hit me - Myself five years ago would be really proud of what I'm achieving here in London now.

LBB> Anything else you would like to add?

Adriaan> It's not often you work on a project where all parties involved end up super happy with everything - the client, the agency and yourself.

But this was one of those projects that felt so collaborative and we were all so excited by the final film. It's the best experience I've had on a commercial job. Shout out to the amazing team at Royal Enfield and New Commercial Art and of course my production co FAMILIA.

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CLIENT: Royal Enfield (Eicher Motors Limited)



DIRECTOR: Adriaan Louw EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Toby Walsham, Mikey Levelle PRODUCER: Tom Birmingham

DoP: Thomas Revington


Agency: New Commercial Arts   Founder, Creative:  Ian Heartfield Founder, CEO:  James Murphy

Founder, Strategy:  David Golding Artistic Director:  Nici Hofer,  Art Director:  Kenny Meek

Copywriter:  Mary Johansen Business Director:  James Derrick  Account Director:  Kate Kenyon

Senior Planner:  John Blight Director of Production:  Matt Craigie-Atherton Film & Stills Producer:  Zeynep Strange

Project Director:  Sylvie Edwards


DOP: Thomas Rivington 1ST AD: Benji Edwards 2ST AD: John Robinson

1ST AC: Justin McGillivray GRIP: David Ashby, Emmet Cahill GAFFER: Grant Campbell

DIT: Will Gardner HAIR & MAKEUP ARTIST: Robyn Walsham WARDROBE STYLIST: Justin Hamilton



CASTING: Lane Casting CASTING DIRECTOR: Hannah Ashby Ward


EDIT: Final Cut

EDITOR: Ryan Beck


GRADE: Coffee & TV Post Producer:  Thom Godsill COLOURIST: Simona Cristea

Flame / VFX / Online:  Rory Whittle Sound Design & Mix:  Wave Studios Sound Designer:  Jeff Smith

Music Composed by:  Richard Hawley Master Controlled by:  Warner Publishing: Universal


Design:  King Henry Soho

Retouching:  King Henry Soho

Categories: Automotive, Bikes

FAMILIA, Tue, 23 Aug 2022 11:01:35 GMT