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MPC Takes a Spin with Mercedes

MPC teamed up with Anonymous Content Director Frederic Planchon and Merkley + Partners GCDs David Fox and Scott Zacaroli, providing VFX for two new Mercedes-Benz spots promoting the E-Class and SL-Class vehicles.

Press Release from MPC:

Take a look at MPC's beautiful VFX for two new Mercedes-Benz spots and it's clear that this studio likes to ride in style. MPC teamed up with Anonymous Content Director Frederic Planchon and Merkley + Partners GCDs David Fox and Scott Zacaroli on the efforts, which promote the E-Class and SL-Class vehicles.

Patents is an integrated CG spectacle featuring a comet-like tail of patents swarming behind an E-Class sedan as it storms through city, country and twisting seaside and mountain roads, paying homage to the more than 80,000 Mercedes-Benz patents at work in the new luxury machine.

In order to ensure delivery of a large number of shots in a short turnaround, MPC did extensive pre-shoot R&D, working closely with Planchon and the agency creatives. The CG team developed a mix of strategies involving particle animation and a good deal of individually animated papers to deliver the creative vision, work that paid off as the number of shots increased and the timeline shrunk.

"We always strive to deliver high-quality results regardless of challenges that evolve over the course of a project," noted MPC LA MD Andrew Bell. "With Patents, our team delivered top-notch work in just nine days and in time for the Oscars, one of the biggest television events of the year."

Art is a historical tour through the SL-Class, showcasing the model's many iterations against a backdrop of an ever-changing Los Angeles from the 1940s to present. MPC swept Planchon's footage, removing or replacing signage and architecture to make sure everything was era specific, then added subtle details, including a 1960s-era motel and crowd duplication and structural features at a race track. MPC London Colorist Jean-Clement Soret, whose relationship with Planchon goes back more than a decade, took the director's Red Epic footage and bathed it in a filmic style evoking these bygone eras.

"Anonymous did a fantastic job prepping their locations around LA to capture the architecture, automobiles, dress and characters of each era," noted Bell. "Their careful work made our post and clean-up processes that much easier, especially on the Telecine, as setting a cinematic and period-specific grade for each of the decades was pivotal in creating the spot's feel."

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