In this humorously offbeat spot, a man is hounded by a llama who has a penchant for spitting at him. This occurs at different venues though thankfully there’s always a window or other glass barrier--at a bank teller station or on the subway, for instance--preventing the guy from being directly hit.
Nonetheless being targeted and stalked by a llama can be a bit unnerving--until the gent finally gets the chance to take action. While sitting behind the wheel of his car, the man is again confronted by the llama who spits on the vehicle’s windshield.
The driver then in response merely activates his Bosch windshield wipers, showing the llama who’s boss.
Matthew Swanson of Markenfilm in Hamburg directed “Llama Drama” for Bosch out of agency Jung von Matt/Next Alster, Hamburg. The spot was scored by Yessian Music, Hamburg, with sound design from INFECTED GmbH, Hamburg.
Hannes Hönemann was the sound designer/audio post mixer for INFECTED. The Yessian ensemble included composer Christopher Carmichael, EP Ingmar Rehberg, chief creative officer Brian Yessian, head of production Michael Yessian, and producers Helena Schmitz and Lukas Lehmann.
Music, sound mesh
Sound meshed with the action, including the spitting images, in “Llama Drama. Yessian’s Schmitz noted, “Our biggest challenge was definitely trying to find the right sound for the llama character, something that perfectly fits the llama’s personality. We tried different instruments beside the flute, but in the end we thought we needed a little wink of a spaghetti western theme in our score to underline the moments of the llama and the battle of both characters.”
As for the process of scoring the spot, Schmitz shared that after the pre-pro meeting, “we started with music research to try and find the right mood for the Bosch film together with the director Matthew Swanson, so they had something for the shoot. After the shoot we met with the entire team and discussed two to three reference titles we cut under the film. After that, it was clear that we’d compose two different approaches for the client presentation so we had options to experiment with the story of our characters. We were especially concerned with portraying a sense of fear steadily building from our main character. The first idea was a spaghetti western demo and the second idea was to create a score with a theme which repeats again and again, continually growing and underlining the fear of the guy. In the end, we composed a score which has a constant ‘build, pause, growth’ cycle all the to the last ‘battle scene’ with the llama. After that scene, where the guy ‘won’ the battle, the music calms down but grows bigger one last time to emphasize the final triumph of the guy.”
In terms of dovetailing with the visual effects house, which too was INFECTED, Schmitz related, “We continued to refine the music as we received updated cuts which helped us to clarify our overall approach.”
As for working with INFECTED’s sound designer Hönemann, Schmitz recalled, “We had a constant exchange throughout the process. Both music scoring and sound design were happening simultaneously and we shared our results constantly. The sound designer integrated the sound design into our music and at the same time we made sure to leave the sound design space in our music so we could strike the perfect balance.”
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Client Bosch Agency Jung von Matt/Next Alster, Hamburg, Germany. Production Markenfilm Hamburg Matthew Swanson, director; Stephan Brockmann, Lena Schultz, producers. 3D/Animation Studio INFECTED GMBH, Hamburg Music Yessian Music, Hamburg Christopher Carmichael, composer; Ingmar Rehberg, executive producer/managing director; Helena Schmitz, Lukas Lehmann, producers; Brian Yessian, chief creative officer; Michael Yessian, head of production. Sound Design INFECTED GmbH, Hamburg Hannes Hönemann, sound designer. Audio Post INFECTED GmbH, Hamburg Hannes Hönemann, mixer.