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. Using Framestore's proprietary online communications system, a link was established between Framestore in London, agency Leo Burnett USA in Chicago and director James Wahlberg for Visitor in Los Angeles. The models and textures for the spot were created in Softimage XSI, and the early decisions about how these should look were all made using high-quality still images transmitted on the Internet. Once a set-top box allowing rapid transmission of DVD quality film and video material was installed in Chicago, all parties were able to communicate with Framestore on a daily basis, receiving DVD quality updates of work-in-progress. According to Framestore, a key element of the system is their exclusive in-suite viewing feature, which allows the client online real-time access to the workstations on which their material is being created. You can see the results in the 30-second spot, which began airing in the U.S. in September.
Eric Huelsman details the scientifically significant technological breakthroughs in WALKING WITH DINOSAURS.