"On The Cape" short film + interview

by Andrew

The "On The Cape" short film has been in heavy circulation the past few days on Twitter and Facebook. CodBall had a chance to do a quick email interview today with Ben Fraternale, who created the video with his friend Jeff Friedlander.

Congrats on the video - it really came out great. How'd it come to be? How long were you planning it?

Thank you! My friend Jeff and I have been visiting the Cape since childhood.  When we discovered the Cape league, it became the highlight of every summer. Suddenly trips to the Cape meant calculating the math of how many games we could fit into a weekend. I started photographing the games when I was 15 years old and as Jeff and I grew older, we both gravitated toward careers in video production. This year, we felt we had the right equipment and right creative juice to really represent our Cape experience on film.

What was the filming process like?

We filmed for only three days, bounced all around the Cape, and each day we tackled a different region. We'd film for most or all of one game and then shoot over to the next. At night, we'd head to the beaches and docks for timelapses. Filming felt very similar to photographing games, trying to capture those key moments, so the whole filming experience was really nostalgic in itself.

Tell us about the voiceover. Was that always planned?

I knew from the outset that I wanted a voiceover which captured the nostalgia and essence of our experience. After I finished the editing process, I asked my girlfriend Laura Pavlo (who is a talented writer/author) to try and tackle the material as poetically as possible. I think she did an incredible job of baking the emotion and visuals into words. It only felt right that my grandfather, Ladd Fraternale, would then voice those words. With some editing to make it sound like a vintage radio broadcast, I think the voiceover compliments the video in an essential way.

At CodBall, we've had a bit of discussion about the best parks in the league. The top parks mentioned always seem to be Veterans Field in Chatham, Eldredge Park in Orleans, and Lowell Park in Cotuit. But, all of the parks continue to make improvements thanks to volunteers and donations. What are your favorite parks and places to sit when watching games?

Veterans Field and Eldredge are classics for sure, but I have a soft spot in my heart for Red Wilson Field. When I first started following the league, I latched onto the Y-D Red Sox and got to see some incredible players as a result. That park, though doesn't have every bell and whistle, just fosters unique memories for me, and we shot quite a bit of "On The Cape" there. 

Beyond the Cape League, what are your favorite spots on the Cape?

If I had a "home town" on the Cape, it would be Hyannis. From the record store to the ice cream shops, it screams childhood for me. With the field in such close proximity and the hall of fame in the heart of town, it's always my first stop. 

What's next for you guys?

We've had an incredible reaction to "On The Cape" from the league, players, and fans. Talking to league personnel and hearing such positive feedback made the film more instantly rewarding than we ever could have expected. I think it's important that, with such prestige and talent, the league is artfully filmed in some capacity beyond game streams and televised events. That being said, we'd love to do another Cape league project in some capacity, with the league's permission, for summers to come.