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Blind Revs Up for THQ

Blind recently launched a concept-to-completion thrill ride of a trailer announcing THQ, Inc.'s new MX vs ATV Alive videogame.

Blind's THQ spot

Press Release from Blind

Blind recently launched a concept-to-completion thrill ride of a trailer announcing THQ, Inc.'s new MX vs ATV Alive videogame. The expert crew at Blind handled all production, editorial, post, and oversaw the sound design on the direct-to-client project.

Inspired by classic Hollywood chase sequences, MX vs ATV Alive Announce is a thrilling, :60 ride through a stylized Motocross race course. From the throttle-twisting, gear-adjusting starting line to the ramp-jumping, airborne finale, the spot follows a pack of adrenaline-fueled riders as they tussle through the spiraling, bumpy course, knocking one another off one by one until a lone hero - Supercross champion James Stewart - remains as the victor.

Drawing from work-in-progress box art and website design concepts, Blind created the trailer's distinctive look. "Even though the final piece is very stylized, we had a mandate from THQ to maintain a foundation of Motocross authenticity," noted CD Erik Buth. "From the outfits the riders are wearing, to the motion of the bikes on the course, we carefully studied every element of the sport with the goal of creating something that even the most hardcore fan would view as authentic. If they wanted to, fans could go out and actually buy any of the gear featured in the spot."

To create this realistic effect, Blind focused on two main elements: modeling and animation. The studio modeled and textured the riders and bikes to look as real as possible, recreating actual Motocross gear - helmets, goggles, shirts, pants, boots, even the gloves. Once those assets were in place, animation began. Infusing the sport of motocross with drama and over-the-top action was an inherent aspect of creating an entertaining game trailer, but Blind stayed loyal to the underlying look and feel of the sport throughout. "The dynamics of Motocross are very specific," continued Buth. "We studied hours of race footage to get the signature moves right." Blind incorporated Maya, ZBrush, Cinema4D, Photoshop, Illustrator, After Effects, Avid and Flame at various points in the three-month production process.

"Since this was client-direct, rather than through an agency, we had a lot more responsibility to manage the story and the look of the piece than we normally would," stated Blind EP Dave Kleinman. "Early on the guys at THQ made reference to a Russell Athletic piece Erik had done a couple years back, so that set us up right away with a great working relationship. It felt like a true partnership, in which we were equally engaged in making the trailer as strong as possible."

The spot launched Jan. 8, at Supercross' first event of the season. Visit the MX vs. ATV Alive website at

Credits:Spot Title: MX vs ATV Alive AnnounceAir Date: Jan. 17, 20101/8/11, AMA 2011 Supercross, Anaheim 1

Client: THQ, Inc.VP Creative Dev.: Evan HirschVP Creative Services: Bob BenjaminVP Global Brand Mgr.: Mike LustenbergerGlobal Brand Mgr.: Ali BoudaProject Manager: Mike Kelleher

Prod/Post Company: BlindCD: Erik ButhEP: David KleinmanProducer: Brad HerbstHead of Production: Amy KnerlCG/FX Supervisor: Hatem Ben AbdallahArt Director: Steve PachecoLead Animator(s): Diego Seferian, Christian Argueta3D Animator(s): Steven McClellan, Tony CastroParticle Animation: Jason Kim, Raymond King, Pasha Ivanov3D Lighting Artist(s): Pasha Ivanov, Raphael ProttiModeler(s): John Ployhar, David Mooy, Pasha Ivanov, Ryan TaylorTexture Artists: John Ployhar, Ryan Taylor, Justin Young, Jordan CarrollRigging: Tony CastroRotoscoping: Lin WildeCompositor(s): Lawrence Wyatt, Ryan Kirkwood, Daniel Chang, Chris ONeill, Jason Lowe, Joe Todoran, Maithy Tran, Eric Zunkley, Ivan CruzPre-viz: Diego Seferian, Chris MarcetDesigner(s): Erik Buth, Steve Pacheco, Lawrence Wyatt, Hatem Ben Abdallah, Kate MrozowskiStoryboard Artist: Vincent LucidoWriter(s): Erik Buth, Rick SpitznassResearcher(s): Rick Spitznass, James Kim, Kate Mrozowski, Eric Zunkley

Editorial: BlindEditor: Erik ButhAssistant Editor: Lin Wilde

Audio Post: POP Sound

Sound Design: Hest, Kramer, Van House & WeberSound Designer: Jim WeberProducer: Christy Van House

About Blind:Blind, a multi-disciplinary design, motion graphics, animation, visual effects, live-action, editorial, print and broadcast design studio with offices in Santa Monica and NYC, taps into diverse intellectual and creative resources to come up with compelling results. Since 1995, Blind has been pushing beyond the expected, offering clients a new way to see with award-winning design. A few things remain constant amidst this design/production powerhouse's constant drive to reinvent itself: the abilities to engender surprise and produce projects from conception to reality.

Blind's creative team has built an uncommon level of respect in the advertising and entertainment communities via cutting-edge campaigns for brands such as Xbox, Showtime, Bright House Networks, DirecTV, OppenheimerFunds, McDonald's, Scion, and recording artists including Gnarls Barkley, The Raveonettes and Justin Timberlake to name a few. In 2010, Blind took home a Creative Arts Emmy for their work on The Raveonettes' Heart of Stone music video, as well as a Gold London International Award for the stunning Dr. Martens motion graphics piece, Lilac Wine.

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