It was the night before film day and we had everything ready except for one important thing: background artists (also known as, extras).
We sent Rodri to visit one of our partner hotels, Pariwana Hostels, to see if he could get a group of backpackers to come the next day and help out for the shoot. I don’t know how he managed to do it, but after sharing a couple beers, jokes and a pizza, seven travelers were committed to helping us.
The next morning we met 6:30AM at another partner hotel which was lending us their location for filming. This was BTH (Business Tower Hotel). BTH is a relatively new hotel in Lima which has arrived to break the status quo regarding business travel. BTH is a place where business, art, music, food and a fantastic staff get together to create a unique hotel personality. As I waited for the film crew to set up their equipment, I was worried that the group of extras hadn’t arrived yet.
Rodri finally showed up with the perfect group of individuals to represent a band of travelers in our video. We found different nationalities including Brazilian, German, Uruguayan, Argentinean and Peruvian. All with fabulous styles ranging from a woman in a classy dress, to a tattooed and long-bearded hipster. But best of all, they all wanted to have fun.
At first I was timid about filming amidst the hotel’s different locations, but the BTH staff were quick at making us feel right at home. We started out in the hotel manager’s office, which you can see in the beginning of our video. Following up we had a scene at the front desk, where we filmed while real guests were doing check-in. Staff just smiled.
We hadn’t really analyzed the hotel’s art and decoration before the shooting day. However, we found a couple of inspiring messages on the hotel’s walls which made us improvise a couple scenes in order to get them in a shot. “FEAR IS A LIAR” and “DESTROY WHAT DESTROYS YOU” were my personal favorites. Especially the last one. I’ll leave it up to you to guess who we want to destroy.
BTH also let us use one of their fantastic rooms, not only for leaving all our stuff and changing after every scene, but also to film a ridiculous scene involving Frankenstein and a “hotel manager” having a pillow fight. I played Frankenstein and can say that that was a great bed to jump on. Raise your hand if you have never jumped in a hotel bed!
The best moment of the day was the dancing scene in the hotel lobby. We got the extras dressed up as hotel staff (thank you again BTH), and the lobby was mayhem as we danced and break danced that scene. We even had a couple real staff members voluntarily join in the shoot (check the rock star on the right at 1:28). It was a fun moment to have all of our crew, actors and BTH staff as we made a party in their lobby.
After more than 12 hours of filming, the day finally came to an end. We had one last scene at BTH’s in-house bar, MADBAR, where barman Oscar served a fantastic a pisco sour. As I write this I understand why our actor Javier kept wanting to repeat that scene. Filming at BTH was a different but fantastic way to get to know the identity of this hotel. With great hotel staff with fantastic attitudes and willingness to help at any moment, we can definitely say that here at Arrivedo we are #BTHLovers. Here’s to our friends at BTH, thank you!