The Mill New York teamed up with UK-based production company Gorgeous on two spots for Levis 501 Jeans and Levis Straight Jeans. “Straight Walk” directed by Tom Carty, follows two urban twenty-something’s walking to their destination on a straight, invisible line that leads them directly through the middle of library desks, news stand rooftops, basketball games and other city environments. Wearing Levis Straight Jeans, both finally hit the end of their straight line, where they meet in the middle of traffic.
For this spot, Smoke Artist Aidan Thomas had a few challenges which he overcame utilizing the Smoke visual effects capabilities. In one shot, the male lead head was slightly bent causing him to appear slightly arched. First Aidan had to meticulously create a clean background where the actor head was positioned. Then he had to reposition the head by rotoscoping it and tracking it back for a straighter posture.
The other challenging section was the final overhead shot of the pair meeting. The creatives preferred the framing of a wider shot, but the actor movement in the more zoomed in shot. So, Aidan painted the leads out of the shot, stacked frames of the wide shot on top of each other to create one large plate and then used this to create a new zoom with the desired action of the leads tracked back into the shot. All this intricate work was performed to keep the resolution quality of the zoomed-in portion of the frame. Mill NY Smoke Artist Jeff Robins took over for the conform and clean up.
Director Frank Budgen directed the entertaining spot, ‘News Story’. When a man, watching the news, realizes that the live videotaped pursuit of a criminal is happening outside his apartment, he runs out of the building.
He chases the criminal down, not as a concerned citizen, but rather as a concerned jean owner. Turns out the fugitive was stealing his beloved Levis jeans off a clothes line.
Aidan made numerous refinements for the spot in addition to the online edit. For example, they added cars, lights to the police car, enhanced the logo and stitching on the jeans and varied the speed on different shots. They composited news footage to match the narrative and made the reflections on the television screen more realistic.
Both spots aired in July. ‘Straight Walk’ aired three versions. The ‘Girl’ version depicting the woman walk to the tune of ‘Walk the Line’ sung by Megan Wyler, the ‘Guy’ version showing the man walking to Adem adaptation of ‘Walk the Line’ and a joint dual version with clips of both actors and both vocals.
The Mill, London
40-41 Great Marlborough Street
Soho, London W1F 7JQ
+44 20 7287 4041
The Mill, New York
451 Broadway 5th floor
New York NY 10013
+1 212 337 3210