MPC, Technicolor’s renowned post-production and VFX house, worked on 16 of the award-winning entries honoured at this year’s British Arrows Awards, including “The Long Wait” for retailer John Lewis. “The Long Wait” won the award for Commercial of the Year as well as Gold Award in the Retail and Corporate categories and for the Best 60-90 Second TV Commercial.
“The Long Wait” celebrates that act of giving through a beautifully simple and touching story of a young boy waiting for Christmas Day. MPC’s VFX Supervisor Adam Crocker worked in collaboration with Director Dougal Wilson and Producers Matt Craigie at Adam & Eve and Ben Link at Blink to create the look and feel of the Christmas season from a mid-summer shoot. “It was important that the post work reflected the understated nature of the film,” says Adam. “Our team's primary role was to do what we could to make the film feel like we were actually in late November-December so adding subtle and unassuming effects work was key.” Among the effects added by Adam and his team were digital matte paintings of snow on rooftops, hedges, and window shots to help create that holiday appearance and feel. In addition to the subtle details of a winter setting, MPC also managed the colour-grading with Director of Colour Grading Jean-Clement Soret at the helm. “We had to make sure the mood and feeling that the creative team wanted to achieve was perfectly translated by the grade,” says Jean-Clement. “The Christmas feel had to be there without having to saturate colours.”
The other award-winning commercials MPC worked on included:
“Cats with Thumbs” for Cravendale won the Gold Award in Dairy and for Best 30-60 Second TV Commercial. As the title suggests, this commercial ponders the possibilities of cats with opposable thumbs, and how that might impact their thirst for milk! MPC’s Josh King was the Post Production Producer with VFX Supervisor Kamen Markov leading the VFX Team of Heather Goodenough, Michael Gregory, Neil Griffiths, Ryan Hadfield, Kamen Markov, Richard McKeand, Mikael Pettersson. Jean Clement Soret worked on colour grading.
”Urban Tour” for ASOS won the Silver Award for Best Integrated advertisement. Made for BBH by Stink Digital and Pulse Films (x3), MPC helped bring this interactive commercial to life. Featuring both 2D and 3D effects, this promotion showcases street performance artists who can be clicked on to isolate the individual dancer and learn more about what he’s wearing. MPC’s Louisa Cartwright was the Head of Production, with Dionne Archibald on hand as Post Production Producer. VFX Supervisors Alex Harding and Matthew Unwin lead a team of VFX Artists that included Richard Bainbridge, Kelly Bruce, Drew Downes, Alex Lovejoy, Ian Richardson, Ryan Knowles, Jessica Schofield, and Elliott Brennan. James Tillett took care of the colour grading.
“Anything Can Fly” for Avios, which was recognized with the Silver Award for Transport, Travel, Leisure & Tourism. This eye-catching, enthralling piece called for believable effects such as a flying washing machine, lawnmower, BBQ, and petrol pump. It also features a beautiful song by Leila Arab. MPC’s VFX Supervisors Bill McNamara and Carsten Keller assisted the shoot on the Spanish side of the Pyrenees and were assisted by the talented VFX Team of Ben Cantor, Andrea Falcone, Saber Jlassi, Bevis Jones, Yousuke Matsuno, Sam Meisels, Andreas Restle, Tom Rowell and Rob Walker. In addition to customized propellers for each flying object, MPC’s 3D team was tasked with building a CG BBQ and creating a rocket-style take offwith CG smoke. Jean Clement Soret carried out the colour grade.
“Roof” for Volkswagen was honoured with a Bronze Award in the category of Vehicles & Automotive Products. Directed by Benito Montorio and produced by Maggie Blundell at DDB UK and Josh Barwick at Blink, with MPC providing thepost and colour grading. “Roof” is a montage of childhood memories that asks the viewer to recall the joys of being in a car without a roof. MPC’s VFX Team cleaned up extraneous marks from walls, floors and roads and flipped and corrected the Cabriolet shots on the road for the UK market. “Roof” was shot on 16mm film, some of which was negative, reversed or cross processed, so MPC took great care in scanning the film into digital files to ensure the greatest latitude for grading. The MPC team included Post Production Company Producer Tim Phillips, VFX Supervisor Ludo Fealy, and the VFX Team of ChrysAldred, Ludo Fealy and Bruno Fukumothi, with Jean-Clement Soret on colour grading.
Fosters “Suncream” for Fosters won a Bronze Award in the Alcoholic Drinks category. Part II of Foster’s series of Good Call commercials, “Suncream” offers some unconventional advice for men pondering “suncream” etiquette.
“Half a Look” for the retailer Boots won a Retail Bronze Award. “Half a Look” features the same cast of women that have been in other secret-agent type commercials for Boots and was directed by Outsider’s Ric Cantor for the agency Mother.
“Street Summer” for Channel 4 won the Silver Award for TV and Radio Station Promotions. MPC provided the post and VFX to this highly-charged video promotion for Channel 4, with VFX Supervisor Michael Gregory leading the VFX Team of Michael Gregory, Stirling Archibald, Liam Griffin, Giacomo Mineo. George K took charge of the colour grading. Directed by Neil Gorringe and produced by Shananne Lane at 4 Creative, “Street Summer” captures the intensity and energy of British street culture, showcasing hip-hop artists, street dancers and urban sport professionals performing on the urban stage.
“Ukulele” for Match.com received the Bronze Award for Corporate and Best 30-60 Second TV Commercial. Set in a suburban train station, “Ukulele” captures that “match moment” when two people see one another for the first time and the chemistry between them starts to bubble up. The story includes a boy, a girl, and, as the title suggests, the ukulele that helps the boy get the girl’s attention.
About the Arrows:
Formerly known as the British Television Advertising Awards, the British Arrows Awards recognize and reward the best television, online, outdoor and cinema commercials made by British advertising agencies and production companies.