Director Matthijs van Heijningen, Framestore Grin and Bear It For MoneySuperMarket Spot

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Robert Goldrich
Friday, Oct. 11, 2019

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For the third film in the brand’s latest campaign, MoneySuperMarket once again enlisted the help of Framestore, this time to deliver photoreal CG bears which help the film’s subject “Get Money Calm.” The commercial sees the creative studio join forces with advertising agency Engine and director Matthijs van Heijningen of MJZ. 

The ad opens with a man running through a forest alongside a group of wild bears that act as a metaphor for the chaos and disorganized nature of his financial situation. 

Framestore has worked on all three films in MoneySuperMarket’s “Get Money Calm” campaign, previously delivering a parachuting cat and a goat in a hot tub. The VFX challenge for “Bears” required the team to walk the line between realistic and the surreal, creating and delivering several CG bears for the commercial. 

Framestore ensured each animal had its own look and slight variation in fur color to differentiate them and make them look as photo realistic as possible. The artists then animated the bears and integrated them into the forest environment, blending them with live action elements and making sure interactions with CG plants, water, leaves and dust from the forest environment looked as natural as possible.  

“When we designed the bears, our team created something that looked and moved like real animals but weren’t intimidating,” said Jordi Bares, creative director at Framestore. “We worked hard to make sure their fur looked natural and the muscle simulations made them feel like they had all the weight and impact of a real bear when they were running alongside the ad’s hero.” 

The commercial ends with the subject falling into an environment created by Framestore, complete with singing birds and cascading waterfalls.’ This oasis was created by combining several different live action plates with digital matte paintings and additional assets including a flutter of CG butterflies. 

The bears return in this sequence, now playing and relaxing. To create the most believable scene even when the ad becomes surreal, the team at Framestore created a separate rig for the laid-back animal, so they could animate it with more human-feeling mannerisms while making sure it still looked as natural as possible. 
 
“For the final sequence we needed to concentrate on the groom of the bears,” said Jules Janaud, the project’s VFX supervisor. “Convincing audiences of dry fur is one thing but when it’s wet, it presents more of a challenge in making sure it looks natural when it’s clumped together with water and full of droplets.”

Credits

Client MoneySuperMarket Agency Engine Billy Faithful, chief creative officer; Chris Ringsell, creative director; Olly Courtney, Sonny Adorjan, creative team; Stefanie Forbes, producer; Oliver West, Victoria Doran, assistant producers; Liz Baines, strategy director; Ronaldo Pegoraro, sr. strategist. Production MJZ Matthijs Van Heijningen, director; Helen Kenny, exec producer; Donald Taylor, producer; Lindsay Turnham, head of production; Ruben Impens, DP; Whay Sitthirak, production designer; Kwan Patumthip, casting. Production Services Living Films Editorial Speade Carlos Font Clos, editor. Animation, FX & Color Framestore, London Jules Janaud, VFX supervisor; Jordi Bares, creative director; Sherrine Byfield, 2D lead; Matthew Thomas, compositor Gez Wright, lead animator; Ross Burgess, Joseph Kane, Robbie Brown, animators; Andy Butler, Leo Schreiber, rigging; Joel Best, Gabriela Ruch Salmeron, Mary Doyle, Bear asset team; Alice Roseberry Haynes, Omar Jason, modeling/texture/look development; Mathias Cadyck, ltg; Valerio DiNapoli, Stephen Moroz, Ahmed Gharraph, FX team; Paul O’Brien, Flame; Simon Bourne; colorist; Gavin Hyde, editorial; Christopher Gray , EP; Emma Hughes, CG coordinator. (Toolbox: Houdini, Nuke)

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