In eight 15-second spots for General Mills' Pop Secret, by way of agency Campbell Mithun/Minneapolis, Moo Studios' director Shaun Sewter combined live-action and stop-frame photography of a mountain of popcorn with simple type treatments to create distinctive moods for the microwave popcorn's many flavors. All the popcorn action in the spot was stop-frame animated, as opposed to being created via CGI. In one spot, titled "Swarm," a swirling mound of popcorn diminishes in size as its pieces disperse, like bees leaving a hive.
Framestore CFC has recently completed work on a new TV commercial titled "Cow and Bear," which features two animated plastic containers (a chocolate syrup-filled cow and a honey-filled bear) fighting over the pleasure of dispensing their contents on a plate of Kellogg's Eggo waffles. The 30-second spot represents the first time that the U.K.-based Framestore, best known for their work on the Discovery Channel's WALKING WITH DINOSAURS mini-series, has created photo-real character animation for a prominent U.S. client. Another first for Framestore was handling all post-production online.
Nickelodeon recently collaborated with New York-based visual effects company Black Logic to create a 60-second promo for Nickelodeon.coms Jimmy Neutron Gotta Blast Rocket Race campaign. In "How To Play," Black Logic recreated the Jimmy Neutron character and his rocket ship, as well as countless effects sequences and CGI backgrounds in order to produce the effects packed commercial.
Portland, Oregon's Happy Hour Entertainment recently completed CG work on a campaign of regional television commercials for Indianapolis-based shopping center Simon Mall. Teamed with advertising agency Publicis Mid-America, Happy Hour produced four 15-second spots to complement Simons current print campaign. Each spot begins with a paper gift certificate which then folds and transforms itself into a shirt, purse, nutcracker and rocking horse.
Princeton Video Image, Inc. (PVI) and FOX Sports presented the first dynamic animated virtual advertisements on a live national U.S. broadcast. The ads debuted during the FOX NFL pre-game show on Sunday, September 22, 2002. Using the same technology as PVI's well-known Virtual First Down Line, which appears on NFL and college football broadcasts allowing viewers at home to see a "virtual chalk line" on the field, the three 10-second ads featured Ford F-250 Super Duty trucks rolling on to Ford Field in Detroit and interacting with the field and the stadium in different ways.
The CGI and visual effects team of Black Logic recently collaborated with agency Foote Cone and Belding to create CGI and visual effects for a new commercial introducing Nabiscos new Oreo Cookie Barz. The spot, entitled "UFO," was directed by Greg Kohs and edited by Jerry Fried. Mixing live-action with animation, the spot features documentary-style news interviews of various teenagers describing what seems to be a UFO sighting. As the last teen reveals that she is talking about a new cookie bar, a silver UFO created in CGI by Black Logic, appears behind her and flies out of frame.
Uli Meyer Studios has completed the first commercial for the international launch of Cookie Crisp cereal for client Cereal Partners and agency Saatchi & Saatchi. Studio founder Uli Meyer designed the mascot for the cereal, a wolf named Chip, as well as creating the original artwork for the packaging and directing the commercial. The 30-second spot follows the hapless and hungry Chip as he tries various ways to steal Cookie Crisp cereal from two children. The spot mixes both 2D and 3D animation.
Sway digital studio has completed work on "Flying," an energy conservation spot for California Utilities via Grey Worldwide. The 30-second spot, directed by Sway partners Michael Adamo and Mark Glaser, features colorful computer generated clothing flying through a scenic black and white, Ansel Adams-inspired, California landscape. Conceptualized by Grey senior art director Art Weeks, "Flying" was designed to promote a new series of high-efficiency washers. The spot opens with what appears to be a flock of birds flying over a California river valley.
Stockholm-based design and animation studio FilmTecknarna Animation has recently completed three spots for Cartoon Network. The studio has produced a number of spots for the Cartoon Network "Shorties" series, including WALLYGATOR, ATOM ANT and JABBERJAW. Directed by Jonas Odell (MY BEST FRIEND PLANK), Jonas Dahlbeck and Boris Nawratil (COURAGE THE COWARDLY DOG) and Nick Hewitt (I´M NOT COMING IN), the 2-minute spots play out as music videos featuring Cartoon Network characters such as COURAGE THE COWARDLY DOG and ED, EDD AND EDDY.
Renegade Animation has revived Wile E. Coyote and several other classic Warner Bros. characters for a clever new promo for Cartoon Network featuring the hapless coyote facing a line-up of well-known animated birds, including his nemesis, Road Runner. Mixing live-action with animation, "Line-Up" finds Wile E. Coyote in a police station with a group of cops, and he's been given the chance to pick his tormentor out of a line up. He looks through the one-way glass as the perps -- Tweety, Foghorn Leghorn, Beaky Buzzard and Road Runner -- each step forward and say, "Beep Beep." But Wile E.
The Tippett Studio has teamed with Complete Pandemonium director Steve "Spaz" Williams to create a man-eating mailbox for client Capitol One and its No-Hassle Credit Card. In "Beast," conceived by D'Arcy Advertising of New York, Tippett Studio visual effects artists created a "monster" blue mailbox that chews and spits out whole a hapless bill payer who isn't using the Capital One No-Hassle Credit Card. Under visual effects supervisors Frank Petzold and Joel Friesch, the Tippet team transformed an ordinary blue, four-legged mailbox into a monstrous, slime-dripping man-eater.
The alphabet and 26 animals. These were the ingredients Atlanta, Georgia-based animation studio 7ate9 had to work with to create a series of 6 30-second promotional spots for Playhouse Disney's A-Z campaign. The campaign features Stanley, the star of the eponymous animated series about an imaginative boy who is wild about animals. "It's really a great show," said David Glasgal, coordinating producer at 7ate9. "It speaks to the imagination of young children and I really enjoy it myself.
Visual effects and design company A52 got a little slimy in their recent work for Gorgeous Enterprises and director Frank Budgen for 180/TBWA's new Adidas spot entitled "Slugs." The spot begins with a busy street scene somewhere in Mexico. To the tune of an upbeat mambo score, a pair of new Adidas a3 cushion running shoes jogs along, seemingly under their own power. The shoes continue their trek along the city streets, until they pass a little too close to a shopkeeper's broom, and one shoe gets swept into the street.
Curious Pictures director Noble Jones combined live-action and special digital effects to produce MATRIX-inspired acrobatics and effects in a 45-second spot for Nickelodeon. "Remote-Trix" features a brother-sister duel over the remote control. As they each fight for control of the TV, the siblings tumble through the air, glide over furniture and walk across walls until they finally halt in mid-air, both gripping the remote in a CG-created freeze-time effect. The spot echoes both THE MATRIX and CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON with its stylish, martial-arts inspired effects.
Pringles and Procter & Gamble wanted to liven up its advertising, so agency Grey/Worldwide commissioned visual effects company The Syndicate to bring the mustachioed brand icon, Mr. P., to life in two spots, one employing a mixture of 2D and 3D animation, the other an all-CG production. In "Where's Your Head At," the titular Basement Jaxx song is the score for three roaming teens who munch on Pringles while Mr. P. sings along to the chorus from his home on the Pringle's package.
Framestore CFC, best known for their dino-myte creations for the BBC mini-series WALKING WITH DINOSAURS, was recently called upon to complete another prehistoric project, although this time not on such a large scale. In "Jog," the latest spot for Volvic water, conceived by agency WCRS and directed by Who? for Great Guns, a bored caveman chucks a rock at a sleeping Tyrannosaurus Rex, and a chase begins. The dinosaur pursues the caveman, who artfully dodges the jaws of the enraged beast until the T-Rex finally collapses face first in a river, exhausted.
In the new commercial forCingular, a throng of fully animated, amazingly real taxis move to ajazzy, horn-honking track with plenty of New York City attitude, withhelp from digital production house Charlex. The spot, titled "TaxiDance," was conceived by agency BBDO New York/Atlanta for CingularWireless New York. According to Charlex executive creative directorAlex Weil, "Taxi Dance" is Charlex's most technically involved 3D jobto date. "The Busby Berkeley-like choreography of taxicabs raises the
Italy's Ubik VFX Studio recently completed animation and visual effects for the new Maxibon Motta commercial, directed by Dario Piana and produced by FilmMaster and the Red Cell Agency. The spot opens with a live-action scene on a sunny and crowded beach on a hot summer's day. A space ship appears and a friendly alien with two mouths appears, which he uses to eat a Maxibon ice cream sandwich, before returning to outer space. The model artists and animators at Ubik VFX developed the concept, design and model of the alien and spaceship.
Indian animation company 2nz recently created a "Jungle Safari" for Cheetos. Produced by Raj Kaushal of Fuel Productions through Hindustan Thomson Associates (the Indian affiliate of J. Walter Thomson worldwide), this 20-second live-action/animation spot opens on two kids sitting in the jungle enjoying a pack of Cheetos. They begin assembling 3D animals using the promotional "buildables" that are given free as part of Cheetos' latest promo offer. The plastic koala the boy is building comes to life via animation, and the kids are soon surrounded by the animals they have created.
Scooby-Doo scares up some spooks on the small screen in a new 15-second television spot produced by Blur Studio. Conceived by advertising agency G&M Plumbing, the spot promotes the release of the new PlayStation 2 video game SCOOBY-DOO: NIGHT OF 100 FRIGHTS. Like the game, the commercial is modeled after the SCOOBY-DOO television series rather than the recent feature film adaptation, although both transform the cel animated pooch into the world of 3D. The spot opens on a gabled mansion, shrouded in fog, its windows glowing with an eerie amber light.
London-based visual effectsfacility The Mill recently completed visual effects work for thelatest Guinness commercial "Lava" by way of agency AMV. DirectorRupert Sanders shot the spot on location in Poland. In thecommercial, a small village is hit by an exploding volcano and lavaflows through the streets. People are fleeing their homes but thelocal bar is in jeopardy, so the townsmen head off to save it. Theymanage to stop the flow of hot lava but must walk across it to get
Celluloid Studios recentlycompleted three different animated spots for the card game UNO, byway of agency FCB/Chicago and client Mattel Games. The threecommercials (30-, 20- and 15-seconds), titled "Everybody UNO," willair worldwide. New York illustrator Kirsten Ulve provided the retrocharacter design for the spots, which was animated in a minimaliststyle to complement the design. "You can do just about anything withanimation, but sometimes there's a tendency to do too much,"
NewYork-based production company Dogmatic has created a 60-secondanimated and live-action commercial for Pepsi, now airing in morethan 3,000 movie theaters nationwide. Featuring live-action footageof Britney Spears behind-the-scenes in production of the Pepsicommercial "Now and Then," the new spot, titled "Can Caper," framesthe live-action footage with an animated story where a basictelevision turns into a curvaceous femme fatale and a mysteriousmasked man is revealed to be a can of Pepsi. The animation was done
This spotwill make you want to reach for the floss. New York-based RhinocerosVisual Effects & Design recently created a 15-second spot titled"Evolution" for client Colgate via agency Young & Rubicam. The spotpresents a CG portrayal of the new Active Angle toothbrush in action.Although the concept was straightforward, CG director David Barosinexplained that he and his team had to negotiate some pretty complexdetails. Because the toothbrush has a translucent quality, the light
R!OT artists have teamed with creatives from the design boutique Brand New School to create two spots for a new line of Heinz EZ Squirt flavored ketchup. Conceived by Leo Burnett, Chicago, each of the spots is chock full of sight gags, nonsequiturs and silliness. "Squirrel" opens with a man in a Viking outfit carrying a princess across a cheesy set as a leprechaun tosses gold dust in the air. What follows are quick cuts of a pork chop, a squirrel, a flock of geese and a man covered in mustard.