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MPC and RSA Films create slo mo Honda campaign

MPC and RSA Films create slo mo Honda campaign
David Wood
06 May 2015

MPC has worked closely with RSA Films and director Johnny Hardstaff on this film for Honda using a Bolt camera rig shooting at 1000 fps.

The spot, conceived by Wieden+Kennedy uses complex filming techniques to create the virtually frozen look for the 60” spot and corresponding 20” cutdowns for each car in the Honda Civic range.

MPC worked closely with Hardstaff and the production team, shooting the cars at 1000 frames per second on a bespoke Bolt camera rig, and separately shooting engineers and backdrops at 25 fps before marrying the two.

The 3D team created multiple elements, from dirt and vapour through to the train and elegant butterfly, and in absence of the Type R car - which was yet to be created –built it in CG from scratch.

Engineers enter a paused driving scenario and heighten it in the spot, augmenting it to perfect the experience.

CG lasers were created for the opening sequence, with the blossom placed on the lasers path to amplify the billowing cloud of petals behind the Sport.

Says Hardstaff: “The trick with this Honda project was to deliver a sense of technology but with real warmth and originality.

“To get there we had to be particularly original with how we created our images. This meant once again doing things that are generally inadvisable.

“I repurposed the hi-speed Bolt rig as a more portable motion control set-up and dragged it up a mountain, to a remote Spanish village and onto a Madrid motorway at night.

“This is in no sense a good idea, but what it gave us were fascinating results, shooting natural phenomena in unnatural ways, all of which then needed extensive processing and reworking by MPC.

“The end result is misleadingly simple and natural.”

MPC vfx supervisor Adam Crocker explains: “Creating the virtually frozen look involved stitching a huge number of plates together, as well as marrying live action and matte painted backgrounds with multiple CG elements.

“Using the Bolt camera rig allowed us to shoot multiple motion control plates at hugely disparate frame rates, so the vfx team could integrate real time engineers into the virtually frozen scenes and cars (that were in some instances actually moving at 30-40mph.)

“We had a lot of fun with Johnny and the team at W+K, developing a logic to the engineers interaction with these frozen environments and where real time transitioned into frozen time. ”

The scenes with the Blue Tourer car were captured on up to 10 different plates, with added CG lasers, vapour and numerous bespoke plates.

Towards the end of the spot the city scene, capturing a close up the Red Type R, was created completely in CG, with added water splashes, reflections and CG wire poles in the background.


Agency: W+K London
Agency Producer: Michelle Brough
Creatives: Ben Shaffery & Max Batten
ECD’s: Tony Davidson, Kim Papworth & Iain Tait

Production Company: RSA Films
Director: Johnny Hardstaff
Production Company Producer: Annabel Ridley
DOP: Martin Ruhe

VFX Supervisor: Adam Crocker
CG Supervisor: Anthony Bloor
VFX Producer: Dionne Archibald
VFX Team: Ben Perrott, Andrew Roberts, Tim Civil, Tushar Kewlani, Thomas Carrick, Steve Oakley, Gerard Dunleavy, Alessandro Granella, Mike Cosgrave, Joshi John, S. Alexander Kulikov, Giles Hicks, Sundaramoorthy, Rajinikanth R, Avinash Bhandary, Sindhuja B, Prashanth Parasivam, Akshay Sunil Wadwalkar
Grade: MPC
Colourist: Jean-Clément Soret

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