Saturday, 30 April 2011

Old Spice: Danger Zone

Wieden and Kennedy Portland’s new Old Spice campaign, Danger Zone, treks determinedly into the action-adventure genre with ‘Jungle’. The spot features a new Old Spice guy who will stop at nothing to meet his lovely lady. It was shot on location in Auckland, New Zealand.

It seems that the big challenge was getting all that action into one spot. The shoot included over a week of prep during which rehearsals meticulously choreographed encounters with a crocodile, jungle snakes, piranhas and a speeding truck.

Although puppeteered snakes and an animatronic croc were considered, their performances fell short. So ‘Jungle’s’ reptilian stars were created in CG. The Mill team faced some challenges creating the snakes, such as tracking on a white suit and getting the right movement and performance even as our hero moves so quickly through the jungle.

The crocodile scene depicted an aggressive croc with a humorous bent. A rig was placed on the character’s leg to pull his weight once he got bitten. Old Spice Guy pulls the crocodile along which is not what would really happen.  Yet this is an ad, after all!

‘Jungle’s’ last scene features our hero emerging from a lake of flesh-eating piranhas, but nonetheless as cool and debonair as ever. The actor was filmed in his chic white suit with blue leggings against blue screen; they were removed then a CG skeleton was matched to his legs. The Old Spice guy and his lady love were removed from the background and tracked in a CG matte painting. Dust particles, lens flares and foreground and mid-ground vegetation were then comped together.

So the new as has a bit of everything in there, from 2D trickery to high-end CG and animation – and very cool it is too!