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This engaging story follows Bea, a teenage girl with a fascination
for filmmaking, as she chronicles her friend Billy's infatuation
with -- and attempts to see -- Brandi Chastain, who scored
the World Cup-winning goal for the American soccer team. When
Billy spots Brandi's sports bra on display at a sports promotion,
he steals it, embarking upon a harebrained quest to meet his
Ideal Woman. Bea, both appalled and amused by Billy's audacity,
begins to document his attempts to ransom the bra for a meeting
with Brandi. Edgy, hilarious and touching, the story is very
genuine and comes to a satisfying conclusion.
Done as part of Nike's "Radio-Free Sydney" online
media project for the Sydney 2000 Olympics, providing daily
local and international content from Sydney during the Olympic
Games, this video was webcast in six parts on Nike's website.
During the program's month-long duration, which included a
two-week live run during the Games, the Nike website set new
records for site popularity, with more than 80,000 people
watching the videos. "Radio-Free Sydney" became
the highest-trafficked part of the Nike website, with browsers
visiting for an average of 25 minutes, more than three times
the previous average for Nike's pages.
Desperately Seeking Brandi was presented as if it
were an actual occurrence. Done in a consciously self-referential
style, each segment was posted to the Nike website successively
during the Games. In the second and ensuing segments, Rhiana's
character, "Bea," made reference to the fact that
Nike was posting the videos. Nike products appeared throughout
the video segments, tastefully worked into the story-line.
Probably the most noticeable product was the bra that "Billy"
had stolen, which had allegedly been worn by soccer superstar
"Radio Free Sydney" was produced by BladeDigital's
CEO, John Horniblow, then working as SpikeRadio's Director
of Production. It won the "Best in Interactive Design"
award from the 2000 Annual Communication Arts' Interactive
Design awards, for the www.nike.com/2000 website design.
Although Rhiana spent the bulk of the film behind the camera, as "Bea" recorded "Billy's"
exploits, she made a palpable mark in the film, and demonstrated
a comic flair that marks her as a force to be reckoned with
in films to come. She also showcased her extraordinary intelligence
and versatility, because in the majority of the scenes she
was the one actually operating the camera (under the
direction of Tim Nicolls and cinematographer Warrick Brown),
both shooting and acting in the scenes. All this, and
she was only fifteen years old at the time.