Production/Design Company Arsenal Launches; Completes Six-Spot Animated Promo Campaign for FX Network’s Season Two of Dirt

Author:
Publish date:

New Company Founded By Executive Producer Michele Maples Taps Into An Array of Global Talent Including Award-Winning Director/Designer Vonetta Taylor (Los Angeles, California) Executive producer Michele Maples has launched Arsenal, a new live -action and design oriented production company, and has completed its first assignment -- a new six-spot promo campaign for season two of FX Network’s hit show Dirt, starring Courtney Cox. The promos, directed and designed by Emmy-award winner designer/director Vonetta Taylor, feature 2D, 3D animation and a captivating rotoscoping technique applied to the live action footage that gives the campaign a colorful, pop art /comic book look. "Arsenal represents an array of top-notch directors, designers and creative talent from around the world and matches their skills to the specific needs of the project," explained Maples. "These days our clients are looking for more than the one-size-fits-all approach you find at many design studios and production companies. Because we have a ready ‘arsenal’ of directors as part of our talent network, we were able to respond quickly to our clients needs. The Dirt project for FX Network is great example of the kind of diverse creative resource we can be for our clients." The inspiration for the Dirt promo campaign was FX’s print campaign projecting actress Courtney Cox, who plays the editor of Dirt Now, a Hollywood gossip magazine, as a wonder woman/super hero presiding over Hollywood. The challenge for Arsenal was to bring these single print frames to life without compromising the spirit of the style. "The reason we called Michele is that she has a proven and extensive track record as a visual effects producer, coupled with her associations with top directorial talent," said Stephanie Gibbons, Executive Vice President of Marketing and Promotions for FX Networks in Los Angeles. "We worked as a team with Arsenal and did a lot of brainstorming upfront, and then they took it from there, handling the live action direction, design, and post production of the spots."

Taylor, who previously won an Emmy award for her work on the design of the show open to Carnivale, the highly rated HBO original series, explained that developing the stylized look of these promos, which was influenced in part by the art of Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol, the Richard Linkletter film A Scanner Darkly and comic book illustration, was a collaborative process between Arsenal and FX Networks and that the challenge was not to mimic any one look but rather establish a fresh, unique style of its own. Taylor’s recent work includes the title sequence for the 2007 movie Shoot ‘em Up and a montage sequence in the movie Alvin and the Chipmonks. "I define myself as a designer who is very much a problem solver so that when a client comes to me with a need, I design specifically to those needs," said Taylor. "In developing this animation style, we had to move in a sure-footed way because time didn’t permit missteps or trial and error." The six promos show vignettes of Hollywood stars and celebutants caught in the act of wild, unbecoming behavior, punctuated by a clever comment from Dirt’s editor. In one spot, entitled "Lights, Camera, Mugshot!" we see a carload of partying female celebrities speeding down a California highway. A police siren quickly ends the party as we quickly see the disheveled starlet posing for a mug shot and going to jail. The spot ends with an animated Cox looking at the camera and asking sarcastically "where’s a stylist when you need one?" "Since the target audience is Women 18-34, we wanted to be certain that our pop art comic book style was not mistaken as a throwback to the 1960’s or any other decade, but rather a contemporary look that is decidedly 2008," said Julie Graham, Director of Production for FX Networks. Adds Taylor, "This technique involved taking live action footage shot in front of a green screen and then creating 2D and 3D CG-animated backgrounds to compliment the illustrative style we developed for the rotoscoped live action characters. The challenge was the schedule. We were delivering six fully animated spots in five weeks, so there wasn’t a lot of time for trial and error. We had to nail it the first time around." Flatblack Films, Austin, TX, who have developed proprietary software and workflow to automate the rotoscoping animation process quickly and efficiently contributed to the campaign.

About Arsenal:

Founded by executive producer Michele Maples, Arsenal (

http://www.thearsenal.tv

) is a new live action/design production company representing an array of top-notch directors, designers and creative talent from around the world. What separates Arsenal from many of its competitors is its ability to draw from their immense global talent pool and match their skills to the specific needs of the project. The company’s most recent assignment – a six-spot animated promo campaign for FX Network’s second season of Dirt -- featured the work of Emmy Award winning director/designer Vonetta Taylor. For more information contact Michele Maples at

michele@thearsenal.tv

or 310-526-7361.

Web Resources:

Click here to watch the Arsenal produced spots for FX Network’s Dirt:

http://www.thearsenal.tv

Click here to visit the Dirt page on the FX Network website:

http://www.fxnetworks.com/shows/originals/dirt/

Creative Credits:

Client: FX Network Project: Dirt promo campaign Airdate: February 2008

Agency: FX Network, Los Angeles, CA

Stephanie Gibbons: EVP Marketing and Promotions John Varvi: SVP On-Air Promotions Kenna McCabe: VP Special Projects/Production Julie Graham: Director of Production Albert Romero: VP Studio FX Design Ethan Adelman: Creative Director Studio FX Design

Production/Design: Arsenal, Los Angeles, CA

Vonetta Taylor: Director/Designer Michele Maples: Executive Producer Rayna Saslove: Live Action Producer Javier Alvarez: Editor Dylan Nathan & Eva Flodstrom: CG & Compositing Flatblack Films, Austin, TX: Rotoscope Animation

Related

Soft Darts Professional Tour Japan Uses Blackmagic Design Products for Tour’s Live Production

Soft Darts Professional Tour Japan Uses Blackmagic Design Products for Tour’s Live Production

Blackmagic Design announced today its products were used for the live production of SOFT DARTS PROFESSIONAL TOUR JAPAN, including ATEM 2 M/E Production Studio 4K, which has become the center of the tour’s live workflow. Production included shooting, recording, streaming to YouTube and video distribution throughout the venue of games performed on the main stage, and was also done using ATEM 1 M/E Advanced Panel, Micro Studio Camera 4K, HyperDeck Studio Mini and Video Assist 4K.

BL_Chameleon

Bannister Lake Releases Chameleon Version 10 Real-Time Data Aggregation and Graphics Management Solution

Chameleon, Bannister Lake's data aggregation and graphics management solution is introducing dramatic new enhancements with a strong focus on election data. Within its election module, Chameleon Version 10 improves how election data is ingested and managed. The new release expands the ability to enter manual election results where data feeds may not be available. This is particularly useful in less populated districts or in jurisdictions where it is not practical to organize a real-time results feed. The new functionality also provides an important failsafe in situations where a data feed may have stopped working.

SMPTE_The-Next-Century-Logo-MA

SMPTE's Latest IMF Plugfest Makes Significant Progress Toward Interoperability

SMPTE®, the organization whose standards work has supported a century of advances in entertainment technology and whose membership spans the globe, today announced that the Interoperable Master Format (IMF) plugfest, held Oct. 18-19 in Hollywood, California, marked another milestone in the development of the IMF family of international standards (SMPTE ST 2067), with more than 48 participants making progress toward interoperability.