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Honda Odyssey Travels Through a Simulated “High School Musical 3: Senior Year” Yearbook in RPA’s Cross-Promotional Spot Created by Stardust

SANTA MONICA, CA. and NEW YORK-(Nov. 14, 2008)-Bicoastal creative production company

Stardust Studios


) recently produced a high-definition (HD) 3D animated spot for the creative team from advertising agency


and their clients at Honda. The :30 spot directed by Stardust’s Santa Monica-based art director Jonathan Wu debuted across the U.S. last month, and can be seen online



“RPA’s creative team approached us with the idea of creating a yearbook-themed cross-promotional spot for the Honda Odyssey as part of Honda’s promotion of Walt Disney Pictures’ ‘High School Musical 3: Senior Year,'” Wu explained. “The main points were to make sure it was photo-real and authentic to a high school yearbook. The guys at RPA gave us great input, and we applied their ideas throughout the process, which really made the piece come together well. It was a great collaboration.”

In keeping with the theme of Walt Disney Pictures’ current theatrical hit, the spot begins with a Wildcats-themed yearbook on a student’s desk. After opening, the book’s colorful pages flip past, featuring photos of the movie’s stars and many handwritten notes and artistic doodles. When a Honda Odyssey appears and begins driving through some of the book’s layouts, the illustrated doodles and other photographic elements come to life around the traveling van, until more 3D-illustrated pages present the film’s title, and the book closes. Kevin Spacey’s voice tells viewers, “See Disney’s ‘High School Musical 3: Senior Year,’ only in theaters, and get there in the best-in-class Odyssey, from Honda.” Stardust also created the custom animation of Honda’s logo that appears at the spot’s end.

To begin the process of bringing the spot to life, Wu and his colleagues worked with the agency creatives to render storyboards conveying the overall look and feel, and showing how the Odyssey would travel through the piece. “We then created a previs for camera angles and timing,” Wu explained. “With approval on that, we started rendering out our scenes with proper lighting and detail from Maya to get the photo-real look. Our cell animators rendered-out many of the doodle elements in the spot, and our After Effects team handled the 2D animations and compositing.”

Summarizing his team’s appreciation for the finished project, Wu continued, “I think everyone did a great job with the car and its environment. I love that it’s all very photo-real – you can even see the environment reflected in the car and we added a depth of field pass to give that extra detail. I also think we did a great job with the overall tone of the spot, keeping that high school look and feel.”

RPA’s project team included EVP/chief creative officer David Smith, SVP/creative directors Joe Baratelli and Pat Mendelson, VP/associate creative director/art director Chuck Blackwell, copywriter Seth Prandini, SVP/executive producer Gary Paticoff, and senior producer Brian Donnelly. A complete credits listing for this spot is available upon request.

About the Movie

Disney’s “High School Musical” phenomenon leaps onto the big screen in HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 3: SENIOR YEAR, in which America’s favorite high school students (ZAC EFRON, VANESSA HUDGENS, ASHLEY TISDALE, LUCAS GRABEEL, CORBIN BLEU and MONIQUE COLEMAN) hit senior year. Amidst a basketball championship, prom and a big spring musical featuring all of the Wildcats, Troy and Gabriella vow to make every moment last as their lifelong college dreams put the future of their relationship in question. A crew of sophomore Wildcats (MATT PROKOP, JUSTIN MARTIN, JEMMA MCKENZIE-BROWN) joins in the fun as the film’s incredible new music and exciting dance numbers take maximum advantage of the big screen. Directed by Kenny Ortega from a screenplay written by Peter Barsocchini, the film opened in theaters Oct. 24.

About Stardust Studios

Stardust is an award-winning, full-service creative production company, specializing in motion design, animation, visual effects and live-action production. Led by founder and creative director Jake Banks, Stardust’s Santa Monica and New York offices continually redefine creativity for commercial, on-air, music video and in-store presentations. Their recent work – including projects for the world’s top ad agencies, brands and recording artists – has earned numerous awards and worldwide editorial exposure. For more information, please visit