- Mojo Supermarket Team
In all 92 years of the Academy Awards, only five women have been nominated for Best Director, and only one has ever won. This year, despite a record number of critically-acclaimed female-directed films, no women were nominated for best director...again. So instead of letting another year go by without women, we hacked the biggest award show in Hollywood.
With just a week to pull off the technical execution of the project and only one technical resource for development, we jumped right in to building the final product and adapted it during the process. When we hit roadblocks, we had to try out different solutions on the fly. On the night of the activation, anticipating record streaming numbers, ABC had made slight modifications to their player platform. By the time we discovered this, we had less than an hour to make the updates to our design in order to accommodate—it was down to the wire. We pushed the final, revised build online just minutes before going live.
We wanted to get female filmmakers into the Oscars. Since the official broadcast wouldn’t allow it, we found a loophole that we could manipulate: the commercial breaks. For the technical approach, we wanted to make the user experience as seamless as possible. Users log-in to ABC and stream the Oscars like they normally would. But as they stream, our technology acts like a channel switcher. It iFrames your cable broadcast, and during the ads, it pulls trailers of female directed films from the internet. When the show comes back, we seamlessly switch back to the award show. This approach was unlike anything we’ve done before, simply because GiveHerABreak was unlike anything we've done before.
Our reach went beyond what any of us had planned for, raising over a million in free media for female filmmakers and starting a worldwide conversation that went viral--spanning all the way to the red carpet, where Natalie Portman’s Dior gown, embroidered with all the snubbed female-directors names, shared across social with #GiveHerABreak.