SOS shows how to change light bulbs

SOS, the organisation behind the Live Earth concerts, commissioned Joe Cole of Rock Fight to direct and produce a green-friendly comedic public service announcement, providing easy steps for purchasing and installing energy efficent light bulbs. The 2 minute 30 seconds short film is cast in the medium of educational film from the 1970s, showing a man (Wade Kelly) and woman (Lisa Shurga) learning how to find energy efficient light bulbs at their local store.

Man points to light bulb sign in SOS Light Bulbs ad

Marc Appleby provides the voiceover:

“Light bulbs. They burn out all over the world every day. Don’t replace your burned out bulbs with traditional bulbs. Instead follow these easy steps so you can replace your bulb with an energy efficient bulbs that will last much longer and be better for the environment. First locate the light bulb section in your local home improvements store. Most of these stores commonly use signs at the end of the aisles. Look for the one that says Light Bulbs. If you cannot locate the sign, you can also ask one of the employees of the home improvement store, “Where is the lightbulb section?” Look for a light bulb with packaging that says things like ‘energy efficient’, ‘compact fluorescent’ or ‘eco’. Forgetting to pay for the light bulb before exiting the store can be frowned upon.”

“Now with the proper light bulb in hand you are ready to install it into your fixture. Move the switch from on to off. If you cannot reach the fixture you may need to get a ladder or a chair to give you the extra height needed. Place your foot in the middle of the first rung of the ladder. When you have reached the top of the ladder you will then be ready to install the light bulb so make sure to have it with you. Locate the light bulb socket which can generally be found in the center of the fixture. Insert your energy efficient bulb into the center of the socket but do not release as it must be screwed in. Now twist the light bulb clockwise while gently applying pressure. Make sure the bulb is secure before stepping down from the ladder. Now you can switch the light fixture back on and enjoy.”

Light bulb screwed in SOS Light Bulbs ad

“Congratulations! That wasn’t so hard was it? No it wasn’t. If everyone replaced their light bulbs with energy efficient bulbs it sure would help out in saving and sustaining the environment. So go tell your friends. If you want to learn more tips and tricks check out the rest of our series with great titles such as choosing your next car, disposing of your trash, and not wasting water.”

Click on the image below to play the video.


Joe Cole at Rockfight developed the concept, wrote, and directed this client-direct initiative. Other production staff included executive producer Ned Brown, producer Julien Lemaitre, director of photography Guy Peires, wardrobe stylist Kristen Lee.

Post production, including titles and graphics, was done at Charlex by Flame artist Greg Cutler, graphic designer Diana Park, and designer/animator Bowe King.

Editorial work was done by Lucas Spaulding at Spot Welders.

Music was composed by Kari Steinert at Big Foote, and sound was designed by Steve Depalo at Sound Image. Colourist was Ryan Greenburg at Company 3.

Commenting on the creative process, Cole notes, “Because energy-efficient bulbs have been around for such a long time but are so underutilized, we thought that taking a comedic instructional approach to such a simple concept could really be successful. As a whole, the experience was truly amazing — so many people were willing to donate their time, energy, and talent to such a great cause.”

Ecobulbs in SOS Light Bulbs ad