Clint Eastwood’s ’empty chair’ keynote

Reading Time: < 1 minute

Is it just me or is Clint Eastwood’s keynote at the Republican National Convention feel really uncomfortable to watch?

I can understand some of the rationale behind it but it lost a lot without perfect stand up timing. Whilst I love Clint Eastwood as an actor and a director he isn’t a great stand-up comedian. Secondly, the crowd interaction blew the timing out of the water. Granted they weren’t hecklers but over-exuberant politicos, their neurons blown by the occasion, but it destroyed the illusion that the speech needed to create.

Instead of the initial designed clever witty powerful perfectly delivered comedic body blow, you have a video of a gaunt old man; talking to a chair and appearing at least slightly confused. Whilst the view point of attendees may be different, with the conference atmosphere and in the presence of a cinematic legend and who did the awesome Chrysler Superbowl advert, but as an outside viewer it felt exploitative.

I was surprised that it featured as a vignette on the Republican Party Conference YouTube channel. Ever since we have had satellite communications on truck, never mind the internet, there has been an increasing need to be immediate.

This real-time process has provided workflows for editing but not provided a way of effectively mirroring the stand-off period that editors had to make big decisions, instead we have a bigger chance to mess up rather than look at a piece of content through a more objective framework.  This is something that both brand content creators and media need to figure out.