Smoke & Mirrors New York (SMNY) teamed with Carmichael Lynch Minneapolis this past winter to launch a beautifully quirky spot for the Denver Museum of Nature & Science that showcases the New York studio’s ability to complete a project from production through post.
The “silent movie” like spot features the improbable, but amusing scenario of a giant dinosaur playfully slipping and sliding across a frozen pond. A stirring classical number runs in the background as the brontosaurus crashes, struggles, pirouettes, and ultimately topples back to the ice. The spot ends with a superimposed graphic: “Dinosaurs. Ancient Fossils. New Discoveries. Coming this winter to the Denver Museum of Nature & Science.”
Carmichael Lynch’s Executive Integrated Producer Brynn Hausmann comments, “It was an incredible experience at Smoke & Mirrors, the process could not have been more seamless. We had lots of fun and a very satisfying creative experience.”
Via our recently ramped up 3D department we were able to create, rig, animate and render the entire project in under a month. Smoke & Mirrors filmed the live-action backgrounds in Central Park, then the Manhattan skyline was replaced with the Denver Museum area in post.
Every detail from the ice cracking under the reptile’s tremendous weight, to ice chips flying from its slipping feet were rendered to create a believable, cohesive scene.
This sees a move into animation direction for Smoke & Mirrors, a new service we are pleased to offer.
New York and London-based design, animation and VFX studio, Smoke & Mirrors was founded by Creative Director/VFX Artist Sean Broughton (NY), Penny Verbe (UK) and Mark Wildig (UK). A creative and artist-driven company synonymous with vision and originality since its inception, Smoke & Mirrors has consistently succeeded because of its collaborative approach and ability to build lasting creative relationships with directors, producers, agencies and clients alike.
Production in the New York office is lead by CCO Sean Broughton, MD Jo Morgan and Executive Producer Celest Gilbert. Diverse projects range from work on the Harry Potter and Bond film series, to commercial campaigns for Mercedes, Burger King, Miller Lite and Sirius. Recent music vid clips include Feist’s 1 2 3 4, and I Feel It All. Each office is fully networked together with complementary systems allowing the companies to share resources, expanding local capacity. Close involvement with hardware and software manufacturers and developers has kept Smoke & Mirrors at the forefront of innovation and technology.
Client: Denver Museum of Nature & Science
Spot Title: Dinosaur
Air Date: June 2009
Agency: Carmichael Lynch, MN
Senior Writer: Ellie Anderson
Senior Art Director: Brad Harrison
Chief Creative Officer: Jim Nelson
Executive Integrated Producer: Brynn Hausmann
Director of Business Affairs: Vicki Oachs
Director of Integrated Production: Joe Grundhoefer
Prod Company: Smoke & Mirrors/NY
Director: Sean Broughton
Post/Effects: Smoke & Mirrors/NY
CD: Sean Brougton
Lead Sr. CG Artist(s): Steven Parrish, Michael Donovan
Lead Animator: Serkan Ertekin
CG Generalist/Tracker: Wei Louie
Lead Modeler: Greg Calas
Sr. Flame Artist: Nic Seresin
EP: Celest Gilbert
Editorial: Smoke & Mirrors/NY
Editor: Sean Broughton
Telecine/Grade: Smoke & Mirrors/NY
Sound Design: Brahmstedt White Noise
Sound Designer: Carl White
Music: The Nutcracker
Shoot Location: Central Park