Launching the first line of toys for Blue’s Clues & You!, the hit remake of the groundbreaking, curriculum-driven interactive series Blue’s Clues, Nickelodeon called on long-time partners 2C 2.0 for a linear and social advertising campaign. The goal was to create an enchanted VFX experience to bring to life Nickelodeon’s original, live-action “Kid Fantasy” concept in which Blue leaps from the TV screen to help a little girl find clues that transform normal objects into awesome Blue’s Clues & You! toys, games and even a super-soft plushy! Watch the spot HERE.
From green light to delivery, 2C worked closely with Nickelodeon to overcome the inherent challenges posed by the pandemic, pulling off a feat in the coordination of the live-action shoot and VFX process. The teams planned extensively over Zoom to ensure that each shot would work for VFX, as only the DP/camera operator and mother of the talent could be present on set.
“There were so many challenges to think about with COVID and remote-style shooting, which was the safest option at the time. We had to make sure that the two-person production team on the ground with our talent could do everything the client wanted sans a traditional crew,” said Director Tony Cohen. “What made things easier was 2C’s expertise and availability to talk creative out, especially with the animation aspects being added to live action.”
2C is no stranger to working remotely. With its curated teams spread across the globe, they were well-prepared for the challenges COVID would present to post-production alongside trusted partner, Nickelodeon.
“Many of us have been working remotely for quite a long time, and we’ve had plenty of practice living in a hurricane zone, so quarantine work-life is fairly similar to our normal way of working,” said 2C Creative Director Cheryl King. “The teams on this production spanned over 5 time zones – from L.A. to Miami to Dublin – so we both planned extensively to ensure a seamless successful project and worked to cultivate and maintain open and honest communication – an absolute necessity during this time of change and evolution in our industry.”
Once the shoot was completed successfully, 2C went to work, both editing the live-action spots and handling VFX to ultimately create a colorful, fun and engaging product launch campaign consisting of 30- and 15-second linear spots that could run on such OTT platforms as FireTV, SamsungTV and Pluto, to name a few. The campaign also includes a mini-series of short social spots at various ratios of 1×1 and 9×16 to span the social platforms.
“This was a VFX-intensive production so VFX supervision had to be especially well-monitored to ensure that the plates that were shot would work with the compositors and 3D artists,” said 2C VFX Supervisor Bob Cobb. “In addition, Nickelodeon gave us access to the rig used by the studio for the Blue’s Clues & You! series, and our animators had to get up to speed not only on the rig, but also making sure that any animations done would match the show’s existing style.”