“Of all the directors we worked with, the name of Lester Bookbinder caused the deepest breath.
No detail was beyond his eagle eye.
On a square foot basis, his sets were by far the most expensive and time consuming to make.
One of his tricks was to direct a carbon arc light across the set to highlight any imperfection, and woe betide if found any were found.
To have him walk on set on the morning of the shoot and just nod his head in approval was one of the art director’s highlights.”
That’s from one of the guys responsible for building a set for Lester, film art director Mark Hill. (There’s more from Mark on working with Lester here: http://marchill.org/apollo/index.php/film/89-film/123-working-with-lester-bookbinder.)
I’ve been trying to track down the results of this ‘eye’ for a while now, turns out they were all sitting on arrowsarchive.com, run by the good folks at The History of Advertising Trust, they’ve been kind enough to gather them together for me to show here.
At the time they were spellbinding, like nothing else in an ad break, ads like the one for Chanel No 5 felt like entering a more exotic world.
Looking at the ads now, some feel a little old-fashioned, their age given away by the ‘addy’ voiceover or long forgotten product.
Some feel a bit sexist for 2015.
Some appear to have virtually no discernible idea, ‘woman hangs around in a room for 25 seconds, cut to Bally logo’.
But all look amazing.
Many use a type of lighting you no longer see, the result, whether it’s a rolling Liqourice Allsort or a tapping foot is captivating.
I could only find one music video Lester shot, so I’m attaching it to his commercials.