Free Range Humans, an original, digital content series from Corona Studios, aired on YouTube last week. The series follows eight extraordinary people – including two South Africans – who left their unfulfilling indoor lives to follow their passions and live an authentic, purpose-driven life close to nature.
The launch of Free Range Humans took place at the V&A Waterfront today, where a “caged human”, Clifford Young, was released from a giant glass box where he had spent 15 hours a day for five days, living his life indoors and online, symbolic of a “caged” modern lifestyle. The other actors, Amahle Mtengenya and Nina Erasmus, who were also “boxed” in similar circumstances in Sandton City and Fourways Mall, respectively, were also released.
Starring Mzansi’s first black free diving instructor, Zandile Ndhlovu, and Cape foodie forager, Roushanna Gray, in Free Range Humans both share how they disconnected from their previous careers and turned their passions into a fulfilling, outdoor, lifestyle.
Free Range Humans comes out of the newly launched Corona Studios and marks the first of many content-led initiatives for the brand, who is expanding its entertainment footprint to engage consumers more deeply across their passion points.
“Most of us spend 90% of our lives indoors and online, missing out on so much that life has to offer. Lately this has been felt even more keenly and has caused people to question their way of life. It’s resulted in a global phenomenon where people want to find ways to disconnect from routine and reconnect with nature while living their lives & passions with purpose. The first season of Free Range Humans is about eight people who have done just that,” says Corona Africa Marketing Manager, Melanie Nicholson.
For many, a relaxed, outdoor way of life is a mere daydream. Through its short format 6-10 minute episodes, Free Range Humans offers mental disconnection for those indoors and celebrates the stories of individuals around the world who made this a reality. They challenged a conventional lifestyle to overcome obstacles and fully embrace their passions, ranging from underwater art sculpting to the development of an influential female surf school. Each story offers insight and inspiration into what a rich life can be when we just make that first step.
Notably, the casting process was rigorous and assessed 500 candidates, and, in the light of Covid-19, the shoot included teams working in six virtual edit rooms across multiple time zones, allowing for nimble, real-time collaboration between editors, producers, and sound design daily.
“My journey began the moment I looked beneath the surface of the water, and then her embrace,” says Zandile Ndlovu, an account manager turned free diver. “I just knew I had to find a way to make this my life. Teaching Freediving has empowered me to introduce communities who previously had no access to the ocean, to bridge the gap of fear and encourage new exploration while holding space. The power of my passion meeting my purpose, encourages me keep going everyday”.
Importantly, the people featured in Free Range Humans are not merely visitors to the free-range lifestyle and who then retreat back to their city cages. Says Roushanna Gray, who went from food services to a forager, and is now renowned for her unique sea foraging and cooking skills. “It’s been an absolute honour to share my story on Free Range Humans. The sea holds memory, knowledge, nutrition and freedom among a multitude of other gifts. I am grateful knowing that I am doing something that not only fulfils my purpose and passion, but also working towards highlighting seaweeds as a sustainable food source for our planet and oceans.”
Shot in 10 countries, while Free Range Humans is inspired by the traditional television show format, it was specifically shot to live natively across the social universe. All eight episodes of Free Range Humans from Corona Studios can be viewed on Corona’s YouTube channel and other social platforms starting today at coronaafrica.com and YouTube.com/Corona.