Director Matt Murphy and Producer Ben Scandrett-Smith at Goodoil Films approached us with a brief for the Lexus 'A Beautiful Contradiction' commercial that required a focus on the car's unique handling features - its 'Sport' and 'Eco Hybrid' modes. The idea that the car would need to demonstrate its talents on a moving platform set against a dramatic coastal headland was enough to get us excited. Matt brought a pre-viz animatic to us that clearly demonstrated the mood he wanted to create - assertiveness, speed and power when the car is in its 'Sport' mode, and gracefulness, ease and tranquility when it's in 'Economy'. The team at Fuel added to this with a story-reel to help determine how many shots would require the usage of a full CG version of the car. Built in Maya and rendered with Maxwell, our artists were able to replicate the Lexus with photoreal accuracy to ensure a seamless transition between shots of the real Lexus, and those shots that required a CG version. The car was filmed on a static platform which had a small amount of textured surface and was subsequently recreated for the moving CG gimble. The headland was scanned during a helicopter shoot and recreated in 3D in order to give the artists flexibility during the complex edit. A lot of care was taken to ensure that the moving car tracked seamlessly with the moving CG platform and against the sky and seas. It was essential that the balance between the original pre-viz and final output was right, so several edits were done to ensure that the mood, story arc and realism reflected what Matt wanted to achieve. VFX Supervisor Andrew Hellen: "A lot of attention was paid to the edit and we worked closely with Matt and Bernard Garry to keep it live through our production schedule. We continually fed them shots to help find the right balance between the Sports mode where the car moves dynamically, fighting to gain control of the platform, then finding a moment when the car slows the platform for a beat to switch to Eco and the Lexus gracefully gains control, leveling the platform for the final few shots." Lexus Platform first aired in Australia on March 27.
Client: Lexus Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi Executive Creative Director: Steve Back Creative Director: Steve Jackson Copywriter: John Mcelvey Art Director: Pete Galmes Art Director: Simon Cox Agency Producer: Llew Griffiths Account Director: Emma Belcher Production Company: GoodOil Films Director: Matt Murphy Prod Co Producer: Ben Scandrett-Smith DOP: Susan Stitt Editor: Bernard Garry, The Editors Sound Design: Simon Kane, Songzu VFX Supervisor: Andrew Hellen Executive Producer: Celia Nicholas Producer: Erica Fordvia www.coloribus.com