AEAF 2012 • Finalist (TVC/VFX)
APDG 2012 • Finalist (Design on an Advertisement) • Finalist (Visual Effects)

“How you start is everything,” says the stoic Pharrell, standing in a white, spaceship-like room. “I start pure — with a blank canvas."

Featuring his track 'Truth or Dare', Pharrell shows us how he creates layer after layer of sound to mix a track. First he adds adds the beat, trying out a round of percussionists, then the “groove”. As Pharrell sleepily points his finger, visions of instrumentalists - personified audio samples - spring to life, filling the room. “Then, the vocals,” he commands, and the white space is transformed into a packed club, its imperturbable creator above, looking on calmly at the crowd. The result: a perfectly mixed, full impact sound. The parallels to a Smirnoff mixed drink are obvious enough.

Directed by Darryl Ward of Curious Films, Cutting Edge had two weeks to create a minute-long VFX heavy piece for Smirnoff and Leo Burnett Sydney, as well as 30' and 15' versions. From the architectural pre-vis to the transitions to the rotoscoping and compositing, it was a tight turn-around.

An added feature of the campaign will be that smart phone users will be able to "Shazam" the commercial to access additional footage and further information on the campaign from an exclusive micro-website. This is a first for a TV commercial in Australia.

Says Pharrell: "I like how Smirnoff present a pure vodka, perfect for mixing - this is what I try to do with my music, so I agreed to be a part of this campaign."

For the music afficianados, watch closely for appearances of actual musicians (not actors!) such as Prescott Ellison, Stevie Starlight, and blues great Roy Gaines.

Watch the Making Of here:
youtube.com/watch?v=JRxS4DLvL8s&hd=1

Credits:
Post Production: Cutting Edge
VFX Supervisor: Ron Roberts
Creative Director: Brent Grayburn
Lead Compositor: Scott Geersen
Compositors: Jeff Gaunt, Tim Walker & Lars Andersen
3D Artist Fluid Simulation: Phil Jackson
3D Artists: Tom King, David Brown, Lyle Carroll, Rob Conn, Ben Swinbanks & Jostein Finnekaasa
Nuke Artists: Daniel Loui, Genevieve Serna, Adam Jones and Sandeep Vengsarkar
Producer: Abby Buick
Assistant VFX Producer: Flavia Riley & Katherine Webb
Production Company: Curious Film
Director: Darryl Ward
DOP: Christophe Lanzenberg
Producer: Tara Riddell
Executive Producer: Peter Grasse
Editor: Patrick Fileti
Agency: Leo Burnett Sydney
Executive Creative Director Andy DiLallo
Creative Director: Tim Green
Art Director: Chris Moreira
Copywriter: Mark Schoeller
Head of Client Services: Peter Bosilkovski
Agency Producers: Rita Gagliardi & Tim Denton

Featured on:
Fubiz (fubiz.net/2011/08/31/smirnoff-pharrell-williams/)
AdWeek.com Ad of the Day (adweek.com/news/advertising-branding/ad-day-smirnoff-134482)
Trendhunter (trendhunter.com/trends/pharrell-williams-smirnoff)

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