Mr Porter is a hugely successful clothing brand, retailing across the world and when they asked to come up and create a mini film at Twisted, of course yes was the answer!
The phone call came back in January when Mr Porter explained they were keen to create something similar to another film they’d produced for the Aston Martin DB5 (a great watch!). The idea was to shadow our Head Technician, Rob Lewis to really try and show the intense craftsmanship that goes into creating a Twisted Defender.
The trip was organised and the meet was Thirsk train station, 10:15am on the 13th April. A crew of 12 strong stepped off the train and were met by the three time gumball competitor 110 V8 and the very new 110 T80, the Mr Porter team were impressed as we headed back to Twisted HQ!
First thing first, we sat down with the Director and created a plan for the next two days. Initially we wanted to show all the different stages to a full T80 build however we knew fitting all this in with one single vehicle could be a stumbling block. With much deliberation we created a plan to make sure certain vehicles were available at key stages in a way that would allow us to create a film to show the journey of a Twisted vehicle build.
As the crew set up on the first day, we (the Twisted guys) had a final last minute cleaned up and the filming began. The initial scene was Rob driving to work in his own Defender. As the rain hit hard in Yorkshire it seemed rather normal as Rob embarked on his journey to work.
Exterior additions came next, as Rob attached LED headlights, a front grille and light surrounds to the front of the standard model. Up next – the stripping back, the majority of Twisted builds are fully soundproofed and for this to be implemented, the vehicle must be stripped back. Once the vehicle has shed its body the process can begin, in the film this can be seen where Rob is adding a layer of soundproofing material to the roof panel. Time for a late lunch!
The afternoon saw Rob fully masking the car to give full coverage while the under sealing took place, an important stage to protect the underneath from general wear and tear. Once the Defender was back on the ground it was time for the interior. Recaro seats are a great addition to a Defender and this build was no different, Rob began to attach the ivory leather to the sports seat, it was beginning to all come together as he began to refine the interior detail.
The full day came to a close with the Twisted progressive suspension and fitting of the Alcon Brakes in the more intricate areas to a Defender which can’t quite be seen at first glance.
With each scene lasting around an hour to shoot it was a long but very fulfilling day, it was clear that the Mr Porter team were really beginning to understand the Twisted story and the intricate detail and passion that goes into each stage of a build. We were all looking forward to day two.
The bright morning of Thursday gave us the chance to visit the paint shop where we created the scene of Santorini Black paint hitting the T80, as the paint misted the room it was clear the shot was going to look great. This then led to the final shot – ‘The Reveal’ – in essence this was the first sight of the completed Twisted Defender, we’d spent the morning cleaning, polishing and waxing, the T80 110 looked stunning!
Now came the recording of Rob’s voice over, the one bit that had caused a little nervousness! The questions were perfect, they allowed Rob to really talk through and explain the different stages in more detail, as the questions flowed so did Rob’s overwhelming passion for his job and the iconic Land Rover Defender. He sounded brilliant!
The production team seemed satisfied with what they had and only a quick stop at a local Yorkshire pub was in the way of them getting back to London and home. Now the small wait, in two weeks the three minute film would be produced and sent out for all to see. As a company we were excited to see the work they had done and for Rob, he faced an anxious wait to see how he would come across.
On Thursday the 28th April the film was released! We all crowded around one computer to watch what we see every day! The way Mr Porter had captured and summarise the normally 8 week long build time into a three minute video was a fantastic watch which we (Rob included) are immensely proud of. The worry now is, we face a battle to keep Rob from future Hollywood starring roles..!
Watch the Mr Porter ‘The Land Rover Defender Returns’ here.