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Phoenix Editorial & Designs Creates Branding Film for Launch of Microsoft Silverlight

San Francisco, CA (May 14, 2007)–Phoenix Editorial & Designs has wrapped a 90-second HD branding film announcing the launch of Microsoft Silverlight. The film was produced and directed by Phoenix and debuted at the 2007 National Association of Broadcasters Show (NAB) in April, at which the software product was officially announced. It is also now viewable online at


“Silverlight is a technology about unleashing your creativity and providing the richest, most immersive experiences on the Web,” said Forest Key, director of product management for the Server & Tools Division at Microsoft Corp. “The creative team at Phoenix superbly captures the imaginative essence of Silverlight in this video, and I have no doubt it served as a source of inspiration in our launch.”

The film features a series of abstract, futuristic vignettes to demonstrate how Microsoft Silverlight enables interactive designers and developers to collaborate more effectively. The product is available as a plug-in for InternetExplorer 6 and Internet Explorer 7, Mozilla Firefox and Apple Safari web browsers.

Set to a techno track by DJ Andy Hunter, the film opens on a designer putting ideas onto a virtual canvas. Her artwork floats off the screen as Bezier handles and vector line art travel to a bespectacled web developer, who collects the designs and formulates them into code via a virtual interface. When the code is contained, the Silverlight energy wave overtakes the artwork and code, forming into an abstract skateboard website where customers can customize boards online. Orbiting CG skateboard decks surround a young man, who, with a mere gesture of his hand, begins to select the board of his dreams. After picking the raw deck, graphics “silkscreen” on, then the various components, including trucks, wheels, bolts and bearings become assembled.

Once the board is put together, it comes down a giant assembly line controlled by a factory worker holding a handheld device, also powered by Silverlight technology. After the custom board is complete, the skateboarder seamlessly jumps on the board to begin a graphical skateboarding montage through the reflective “Silverlight City”. One of the riders freezes mid-air as the camera pulls back to reveal two young boys editing the footage in a rich Internet application. When they complete the edit, the camera pulls back to see the footage traveling from the boys to two girls assembling a social networking webpage. At this point, the footage has gone viral; the camera pulls back to reveal the footage being viewed by all the previously introduced characters inside the flowing Silverlight energy wave. The film ends with the owner of the skateboard company reviewing data charts and impressed by the growth in earnings, attributed directly to use of Silverlight technology. The camera makes its final pullback revealing that the whole narrative took place inside the universe of the Silverlight logo.

Phoenix creative director Matt Silverman directed the live-action greenscreen shoot at Kerner Optical Studios in San Rafael, CA. Silverman used a Sony F950 HD camera capturing in the HDCAM-SR HQ format. The dynamic skateboard footage was shot the following day at a local skate park with a smaller, more agile Panasonic HVX-900 DVCProHD camera. Selects were pulled in Autodesk Smoke; greenscreen shots were keyed using the Smoke‘s Master Keyer. 2d3 Boujou was employed by Phoenix for match moving, then the tracked files were sent to Phoenix‘ 3D partner, Studio Ember, which handled the creation of the CG elements in Autodesk Maya. Final online editing, finishing, and sound design were handled by Phoenix under the supervision of Silverman and Senior Editor Bob Frisk.

Said Matt Silverman, Creative Director, Phoenix Editorial & Designs, “Silverlight is the future of application development for Microsoft, and we designed this film to reflect this forward-looking vision. Instead of imagining scenarios which were literal, we created abstract vignettes tied together to tell the story in a simple yet visually compelling way.”

About Phoenix Editorial & Designs

Phoenix has been a mainstay in the San Francisco creative post-production community since 1991. With a roster of award winning editors, graphic designers and effects artists, Phoenix works with creative-driven advertising agencies including Venables, Bell & Partners, Goodby Silverstein & Partners, Publicis & Hal Riney, Heat (formerly Black Rocket), Duncan/Channon, AKQA, and McCann. The company produces spots and HD design packages for Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo, PG&E, Palm, Toyota, HP, AT&T, Sega, and Sprite. For more information about Phoenix, contact executive producer Jonathan Hinman at (415) 394-7777 or visit


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The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Client – Microsoft

Project – Silverlight Launch Video & Web Spot

Agency/Production Company – Phoenix Editorial & Designs

Director/Visual Effects Supervisor – Matt Silverman

Director of Photography – Marty Rosenberg

Skateboard Cinematography – Aaron Owen

Executive Producer – Jonathan Hinman

Producer – Chris Bunney

Line Producer – Robin Kincade

Location – Kerner Optical

Post-Production – Phoenix Editorial & Designs

Creative Director – Matt Silverman

Executive Producer – Jonathan Hinman

Producer – Chris Bunney

Editor and Sound Designer – Bob Frisk

Smoke Artists – John Crossley, Treena Loria

MatchMoving – Iban Goiatxe

Rotoscoping – Matt O’Donnel, Aaron Owen, Jake Spirek, Iban Goiatxe, Lindsay London

Additional Rotoscoping – Roto Factory

3D Design – Studio Ember

3D Design Directors – Jason Ett, Shane Zucker

Online Editing/Finishing – Matt Silverman

Audio Studio – M Squared Productions

Audio Engineer – Mark Pitchford