The Birth of a Branding Campaign

Producing “Diego Galante” to sell Colombian Emeralds International

As with many great branding campaigns, the idea of how to market a chain of jewelry stores with outlets throughout the Caribbean came from Turkel, an advertising agency with whom we have worked closely over the years.

The idea was to sell the concept of what it takes to find emeralds and precious stones in the mines and jungles of Colombia, doing whatever is necessary to get them, and bring them to market.

Turkel created Diego Galante, a fictional character who makes it his job to trek through the jungles and mines of Colombia to supply the stores with these magnificent goods. It was a great idea from the start, and it would give the client a branding position than no one could copy.


Turkel called on Multivison to partner with them to bring these stories to life, and to capture on video the adventures of this cross between Indiana Jones and Michael Douglas from “Romancing the Stone.” The storyboards were imaginative and fun, and it was very exciting from the get-go.

We at Multivision decided that even though most of the action was to take place in the jungle, we could get the look, the dense foliage, and the feel of the deepest and darkest jungles of Colombia at Pinecrest Gardens, in the suburbs of Miami. With this backdrop we found that all the scenes had a perfect setting where we could shoot: a river bed for a rusty old canoe, the jungle itself for Diego to hack through (there was plenty of that), a tropical lake, and even a little old restored bungalow. This last component was to serve as the final scene where Diego would walk in for each of the 3 spots and say triumphantly “Come to Colombian Emeralds International, and see what I just brought back from the mines.” It took a lot to get to that point however. First we had to find Diego.

Castings were held at Multivision’s Coral Gables studio, and over the course of a week many leading men (adventurer types) were auditioned and they got to read the lines. After much searching and auditioning, Brazilian actor Fernando Plentz won the part, and was slated to become Diego.

Costumes were selected from specialty stores all over Miami to find the right look, and props were sought out to exacting specifications.

Multivision brought on Director of Photography Carlos Prio to lens the project. Along with Turkel Creative Director Mike Tesch, the shots were planned out to each detail.

Our location production would need generators, along with a light truck, to create the shafts of daylight needed for true authenticity.

We selected another location, the Wings Over Miami Air Museum, near Tamiami airport. Here, a working replica of a World War II era plane was used in one of the shots. There was also a motorcycle scene shot in deep west Miami-Dade County, along with a moving Jeep scene. Even a mule from a farm in Hialeah Gardens made an appearance, and he steals the show and the carrots.

Multivision shot the project on the RED® Epic camera system to create brilliant high definition images, and to allow room in the video frame for any color correction or image manipulation that would be needed during postproduction.

Back in Coral Gables at Multivision’s studios we “propped” and shot a museum scene, as well as several tabletop product shots, with diamonds and emeralds.

The spots were finished and will start airing on November 1, 2012.

Thanks go out to producer Laura Becerra and an able team of assistants, and to the Turkel team of Mike Tesch and Allison Filella, make-up and stylist by Rory Lee, post-production and color correction all done in-house by Multivision’s René Borroto and Pedro Mendez.

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