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Shooters & DIVE Complete Puzzle for Sovereign Bank

Shooters, Inc. (, the full-service creative production and post house, and DIVE, its VFX and film finishing division, joined forces to produce “Puzzle”, a :30 image and awareness spot with Sovereign Bank’s in house agency 601.

Press Release from Shooters, Inc.

PHILADELPHIA, PA—Shooters, Inc. (, the full-service creative production and post house, and DIVE, its VFX and film finishing division, joined forces to produce “Puzzle”, a :30 image and awareness spot with Sovereign Bank’s in house agency 601.

Shooters, DIVE and director Rob Markopoulos worked with 601 to piece together the idea of Sovereign’s Better Banking philosophy while communicating its new status as a subsidiary of Banco Santander.

Shot on RED “Puzzle” centers on a huge wall made entirely of puzzle pieces. Actors pull, push, raise or compress missing puzzle pieces into place on the wall. The action illustrates how Sovereign Bank can help customize personal banking needs to fit a customer’s financial picture.

“The staff at Shooters was very professional, especially with their attention to detail,” says Christine Pembroke, Sovereign Sr. VP of Marketing Services and Director of 601. “They kept us informed every step of the way and took care of all aspects of the project.”

The VFX required for the Better Banking wall posed interesting challenges for the Shooters/DIVE team.

“There was a carefully concerted effort to bring all the elements together in preproduction and production,” says Cris Andrei, Shooters Executive Producer. “We developed the real and virtual part of the wall and its elements through a sustained and thorough dialogue between the director, VFX supervisor, art department, construction department, post, and the agency. We even took into account the talent’s height so it worked proportionately with the height of the wall and the size of the puzzle pieces. A full day of rehearsals was used to ensure the correct timing of the prescribed sequence of actions which determined the story line.”

First, Shooters shot the practical front half of the wall to then re-create the virtual back half of the wall. They matched all camera angles and keyed the actors out so that the 3D work would blend in seamlessly in a believable, endless environment.

“Since we were extending the wall and background via visual effects, we had to pay special attention to the physical set,” says DIVE VFX Supervisor Ed Mendez. “Having the actors move over both the on-set puzzle and the virtual set area was key into making this shot believable to the viewer. Seamlessly merging the virtual puzzle with the real puzzle wall, along with digitally adding shadows and reflections, made this a successful shot.”

The next creative hurdle came when two actors needed to compress a puzzle piece to make it “fit” into their Better Banking wall. Shooters created an actual flexible puzzle piece, which was then tracked and shot. An additional 3D puzzle layer was also created and Shooters and DIVE artists match moved the virtual piece over the actual physical piece. Lastly, Shooters and DIVE artists created the final fully-3D closing shots of the Sovereign Bank and Banco Santander logos falling into place to complete the puzzle.

Collaboration between 601 and the Shooters/DIVE team was the secret to the success of “Puzzle”.

“Having been part of the creative process early on as opposed to just shooting boards was the key to this production”, says Director Rob Markopolous.  “The collaboration gave me the creative resources I needed in talent, art departments, post, and visual effects to direct a high quality TV spot.”

“The team was very accommodating and worked with us to ensure that our senior management was happy with the concept,” says Pembroke. “There are benefits in working with a professional staff that is willing to go above and beyond to ensure the satisfaction of their client.  It's nice to know that they take as much pride in the project as we do.”

About Shooters, Inc.:Shooters, Inc. ( blends talent, technology and client service to provide a superior level of quality and creativity. Shooters’ client base consists of ad agencies, production companies, filmmakers, television and cable networks, political consultants, PR firms, and corporations. Capabilities include Spirit 2K film transfer w/ Bones data, da Vinci 2k Plus w/Colorist Toolbox; Resolve Digital Cinema Suite, six Inferno/Smoke2k suites, nine Avid non-linear edit, four final cut suites, CGI and graphic design, Flame, three surround sound audio suites, audio recording studio, film, HD and video crews and studio. Shooters offers these services in SD, HD, 2K, 4k, RED and Viper. Shooters also has a content division that produces Food Network’s “Dinner: Impossible” and “Food Feuds”, as well as a visual effects, Digital Intermediate and film finishing division, DIVE ( For more information contact Shooters’ Anne-Marie Starker ( or phone 215.861.0100.

About DIVE:Based in Philadelphia, PA, DIVE (, is the visual effects and film finishing division of Shooters, Inc., led by veteran Visual Effects Supervisor Mark O. Forker. As one of the east coast’s premier post production facilities for film finishing services, DIVE offers filmmakers the opportunity to complete Visual Effects, Digital Intermediates and Titles by coupling creative continuity with an integrated workflow. For more information contact DIVE VP Business Development Bob Lowery ( or Executive Producer Andy Williams ( at 267.514.7700.


Shooters / DIVE:ROB MARKOPOULOS, DirectorBRAD SMITH, DPED MENDEZ, VFX Supervisor - DIVECRIS ANDREI, Executive ProducerSTEVE WHEELOCK, EditorMARK LONGCHAMPS, Inferno/Smoke 2k EditorBOB SCHACHNER, Sound DesignerTIM BOWMAN, Compositor/Artist - DIVEKEVIN FANNING, VFX Artist – Shooters/DIVEJANET FALCON, ColoristMARK REIDENAUER, Post Production Producer

EQUIPMENT:RED camera with Mysterium-X sensorRED Pro Primes

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