Bugshop, a New York motion graphics and effects shop, has completed four spots for the Animal Planet imaging campaign, "Life is Better with Animals." Ross Shain, creative director at Bugshop, served as visual effect supervisor, compositor and designer. He completed seven composite shots and designed the endtags, which involved compositing exotic animals such as a mountain ram, mandrill and alligator on green screen to hide then reveal the Animal Planet logo and tagline stamped into the background.
Black Logic has wrapped on a new five spot campaign for the Nasdaq Stock Exchange: "Qualcomm" uses the modem port on a laptop computer as the entrance to a visual world of digital communications; "Immunex" uses transparent CG human forms and brightly colored double helixes to introduce the world of advanced immunology; "Amazon" portrays that company's familiar Website interface to show how it created online commerce; "Biogen" opens with a group photo of the scientists who broke the human genetic code; and "Yahoo" develops the company's groundbreaking search engines, as a road map through a maz
PDI/DreamWorks has completed production on three new commercials for Monster.com, MSN and Target. PDI/DreamWorks brought Monster.com's green mascot, Trump, to life, working with renowned advertising agency Arnold Communications and live-action director Kinka Usher, on the humor spots which debuted during the Super Bowl. The PDI/DreamWorks team, led by director Larry Bafia, created the monster spokesperson for all five spots' endtags.
Cuppa Coffee has created four spots for Lifetime Televisions Valentines contest "Romanced Across America Sweepstakes." Incorporating stop-motion animation and digital compositing, co-directors Warren Brown and Hector Herrera designed four different "panels" to illustrate the journey that Lifetime is sending their lucky winners on. These panels for Santa Fe, Vermont, Florida and Washington are comprised of photographs, moving illustrations and stop-motion props that were shot under camera and then digitally collaged into frame.
The Discovery Channel Networks enlisted the talents of ViewPoint Studios to develop a promotional package for their Wings and Civilization Channels. ViewPoint filmed the live-action footage of a mock air battle on location in Laage, Germany. Avid editorial transformed the footage into dramatic sequences and then turned it over to the design and Flame teams. The main title and supporting text elements were developed along with further enhancements of color treatments and lighting effects.
Spontaneous Combustion helped bite off the heads of Pepperidge Farms' Goldfish for a new ad campaign. Filmed by New York-based Chelsea Pictures, the campaign consists of one 30-second, a 20-second with a 10-second endtag, and a 15-second ad. The spot begins with CG goldfish swimming and diving through a page of sheet music. As the fish start to swim throughout the room, live-action footage of kids and mothers munching on goldfish fill the scene.
Rhinoceros Visual Effects & Design has brightened up six 15-second spots introducing Colgate Total Whitening toothpaste. "Hearts" shows a toothpaste tube floating in a red space until heart-shaped balloons peel away from the background and float skyward revealing the new package in a stunning white environment. "Brightness" opens with the tube on the same red background, when a brightness adjustment bar pops up, goes haywire and turns the background again to white. These first two spots launched in the beginning of February with the others set to roll out in the upcoming months.
With Chuck Gammage Animation handling the traditional animation and TOPIX/Mad Dog taking on the 3D, a new spot for Kellogg's Island Adventure campaign in the U.K. has Uder the Cow bringing excitement to breakfast. The spot introduces Kellogg's new Corn Flakes Cereal and Chocolate Milk Bars. In the 2D spot, Uder armed with a chocolate milk gun takes aim at boxes of Corn Flakes falling from the sky, turning them into Corn Flakes Cereal and Chocolate Milk Bars. Director Chuck Gammage oversaw the production of the entire spot.
ILM created the new Super Bowl spot for Budweiser that has aliens saying, "Whassup!" The spot opens with a dog walking into a country field and is then beamed up into an alien spacecraft. After the head alien asks the dog what he has learned on Earth, the dog unzips and out pops an alien who yells, "Whassup!" The animation was done using Softimage with facial and lip-synchs done with ILM's in-house software Caricature. Modeling was done in Maya and Alias|Wavefront, with rendering handled in RenderMan and compositing in ILM's in-house software CompTime.
SimEx Digital Studios has wrapped on a new Kellogg's Froot Loop spot, which launches Toucan Sam and his mischievous nephews into space. SimEx provided 2D and 3D animation, compositing, editing, as well as live-action shots for the 30-second commercial. "Rocket" has Toucan Sam and his three nephews propelling themselves into space in a primitive looking rocket. Shane Zalvin, Roberto Casale and Holger Leihe created the cel animation, with help from cel assistant directors Charlotte DeBlock and Ingin Kim. Digital ink and paint was completed at SimEx using the Toonz system.
In celebration of Valentine's Day, Wild Brain has created a new spot for Hershey's, which has the famous Kisses candies blushing. Directed by Carl Willat, the commercial features two silver wrapped Hershey's Kisses as one kisses the other, its wrapper turns red and their tags embrace. The spot was animated in Softimage and rendered in Mental Ray with compositing done in Henry.
Miss Jones, a design and visual effects commercial company, has created an animated spider for AT&T's new media campaign. In the commercial, a spider weaves a web, which represents the AT&T logo. This spot continues in the same vein as other AT&T spots, "Pop," "Newton" and "Balloon," completed by Miss Jones. Miss Jones' spot director Barnaby Jackson said, "With the other spots we start with the [AT&T] logo, and then transformed it. Here, we recreated the logo. We really let the spider have artistic license.
LocoMotion Studios, an Austin, Texas-based motion-capture service bureau, recently completed the Corona commercial "Perico" using the award-winning Vicon 8 optical motion-capture system. This 30-second commercial, created for Atomic Pictures in San Antonio, Texas, features several characters who emerge from water drops off the sides of a bottle of Corona and a keg of beer to create a festive environment that recreates a bar at a tropical resort. All of the dancing and acrobatic moves were captured using a 10-camera Vicon 8 motion-capture system.
Quiet Man has created the visual effects for the spots "Turkey" and "China," from the new four spot Fox Sports campaign via agency Cliff Freeman & Partners (NYC). "To convincingly create the effect of diving off a 50-meter cliff onto dry ground, I needed footage of a stuntman diving into an airbag, and a shot of a dummy falling onto the ground from an elevation of about 12 feet," said Johnnie Semerad, Quiet Man founder and lead visual effects artist. "With that we could then create a composite effect, using Discreet Logic Inferno, of the free-fall.
R!OT has provided visual effects for a new 30-second spot introducing the Escape, Ford's sporty, new SUV. The commercial opens with a simple black on white graphic reading "consumer affairs director." Several letters pull out of the graphic and reform as part of a logo on the back of a surfboard hitched to the top of an Escape driving along an animated beach.
iXL Digital Video Group has wrapped up the visual effects for a new 30-second spot promoting the new toy from Tiger Electronics entitled Chibibotto. In "Attack of the Chibibotto," a giant Chibibotto wreaks havoc in city, resembling a cheap GODZILLA movie. "The spot is an intriguing hybrid between retro monster movie and techno chic," said iXL Digital Video Group senior visual effects designer Doug Dimon.
Santa Monica, California-based The Joneses' Jim Manera has directed an effects-filled new campaign for Chevrolet's Silverado Heavy Duty. Each of the three 30-second spots, featuring effects created by DIGITAL DOMAIN, pictures giant workmen and a giant Silverado operating in otherwise normal-sized environments. In "Construction," a workman picks up a 50-feet long tool belt as he walks past a normal-sized skeletal frame of a new building. In "Ranch," cowboys use a giant Silverado to help track down a runaway horse.
PRoGRESS provided design solutions for the new faster-paced Cisco ad campaign. The four spots share the common theme of the Internet being a tool that can help businesses overcome obstacles to their growth. PRoGRESS used type animation as a metaphor for Cisco being the bridge spanning the digital divide. In the opening of each spot, digital information travels along a glowing blue digital line in the center of the screen and then a computer carat wipes the information away leading to the next scene. "Hotel" then presents a real-time tutorial with streaming video and 3D illustrations.
ViewPoint Studios has created a new hyper-realistic 3D animated spot for Gillette's Venus, a womens 3-blade razor. "The script called for extreme macro cinematography with complex motion and invisible rigging," said creative director Glenn Robbins. "CGI was the only way to go." Utilizing Maya and Flame compositing the 3D scenes were seamlessly integrated with live-action footage. Starting with an overhead view of a contemporary bathroom, a tub transitions into the razors head, showing off the three strategically placed blades and pivotal mechanism.
Class-Key Chew-Po Commercials has created two "Election" spots for General Mills' Cocoa Puffs cereal. "Election: Part I" has Sonny the cuckoo bird campaigning against two other candidates and promising to put real chocolate money in specially packaged Cocoa Puffs cereal boxes. In the second spot, Sonny wins the election and announces that for a limited time chocolate coins will be in all Cocoa Puffs Cereal boxes.
Blur Studio has created a new CGI spot promoting Hasbro Interactive's new CD-Rom game PAC-MAN: ADVENTURES IN TIME. In the spot, Pac-Man is pursued through a maze by a quartet of ravenous ghosts and once cornered he turns toward the camera and leaps through the screen. The ghosts follow Pac-Man into the real world but are stymied when he swallows a "Magic Power Pill." "We went for a styling that was not quite photo-real," said Blur Studio CG supervisor Aaron Powell.
Rhinoceros Visual Effects and Design has created photo-realistic scissors and performed the compositing for 3M's Scotch Tear-by-Hand Packaging Tape. In the 15-second "No More Scissors," a fleet of scissors float from their worldly bonds and head into deep space to form a ring around a distant planet, their former users now free to tear fresh tape without them. Rhinoceros project leader/animation director Arman Matin said, "The sheer number of scissors and the data involved made the 3M project a tremendous task to pull off. There were literally millions of scissors to render out.