WCRS have captured the magic of this year’s Sky Movies Christmas line up in a star-studded spot. Directed by Rattling Stick’s Ivan Bird, the spot features the stars of Muppets Most Wanted, The Lego Movie, Spiderman and Frozen – all of which will be premiering on Sky Movies over the festive period. The challenging post-heavy project also features a scene in which the live action footage had to be integrated into existing scenes from the Spiderman movie, with post-production work being carried out by Finish.
As a family are collectively decorating their Christmas tree, Kermit the Frog strolls in, declaring it ‘Sky Movies Adventure Time!’ and whisks them away on a festive adventure through a number of Sky Movies’ upcoming Christmas titles. The family adapt to their surroundings as they move from setting to setting, shifting between live action, animation and CGI. The complexity of the project threw up a number of challenges in post-production, which was carried out by Jason Watts, Kayley Fernandes, Alaric Holberton, Harin Hirani and Paul Harrison at Finish.
Finish Flame Artist Jason Watts comments “There were a number of challenges for us to overcome whilst working on the spot, such as how we could integrate separate sequences from separate studios and make them feel cohesive and that they were from the same source.”
Firstly the family visit the furry stars of Muppets Most Wanted, before they’re catapulted onto the set of Spiderman – via a Great Gonzo assisted seesaw. VFX work by Finish plunges the family right into the heart of a fight scene, where they’re then rescued from imminent danger from the superhero.
Jason comments “Our hero family had to be integrated into a specially cut Spiderman sequence. Some of the shots were from the movie, but most of them were specifically shot scenes which feature our family. Obviously these scenes had to cut perfectly with the movie shots. One evening, we closed a portion of Times Square and filmed hero shots and plate shots to embed our family in.”
He adds “Our whole approach was to make it seamless, so in addition to replicating the movie’s look, we actually gained permission from DC to add our family into their footage. We analysed the camera angles and lenses, and matched them perfectly to combine our family – which we shot in a studio – with the movie. Lens effects and additional Spiderman movie effect were also generated to layer over and integrate further.”
Escaping the dangerous scenario, the family then find themselves in the midst of a snowball fight with the cast of The Lego Movie before sledging into the animated world of Disney smash-hit Frozen. It’s a reminder that Sky Movies boast a heavy-hitting, big-name line up this Christmas, including number of major premiers and much-loved Christmas films.
The spot’s end shot also proved to be a challenge in post-production. Jason says “It was a simple pull-out from a house window which was shot in a studio with falling practical snow, but during the edit it was decided that the shot was to be sped up and the camera was to tilt and look at the sky. Not only did we end up creating all the exterior, but due to speeding up the shot the snow began to fall too fast and had to be removed – this meant totally breaking down the end shot and rebuilding it entirely in CG. Once it was cleaned and sped up, new CG snow which fell at the correct speed was added.”
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Creative Director: Barry Skolnick
Agency Producer: Sally Lipsius
Creative Director: Leon Jaume
Creatives: Jane Briers & Dave Cornmell
Production Company: Rattling Stick
Director: Ivan Bird
Producer: Polly Ruskin
Post Production: Finish
VFX Supervisor: Jason Watts
Colourist: Paul Harrison
Nuke: Kayley Fernandes
CG: Alaric Holberton, Harin Hirani
Post Production Producer: Louise Unwin