Sunday, March 22, 2009

Posted from email

Most people don't post stuff their mom emails to them. I'm not one of those people.

Pepsi Cola - Click here for the funniest movie of the week

We spend a lot of time thinking about effects and shots. We spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to do things cheaply. This Pepsi commercial is an example of an infinite amount of money being spent on a man, a soda, a sandwich, a dog, a cat.

At no time did anyone say "Nah, we won't do that, it'll be too expensive." That cat simply cannot be a live, un-composited, and practical cat for the duration of the shot. But somebody, somewhere, really did a detailed study of how cats actually move.

The dog actually does a double-take. Can that be done practically? If this is CG, man the fur looks great.

Oh, and the cat makes me laugh.


Ian said...

Hrmm... I actually think this commercial could be done for a few bucks, if you knew how to work with the animals (I have no idea how to make a dog take a can).

I think the cat aspect is probably pretty simple- you don't actually SEE the dog holding the cat.

I imagine somebody just picked up the cat by the scruff of the neck, carried it up to the counter and dropped it off on the plate. Then the dog did the same motion, and they rotoscoped/comped em together- Bam! It'd only be a bit more effort after that to paint in shadows (like from the cat's tail on the dogs leg), to really make them look like they're both there.

Another reason to think this? Watch the left hand side of the cupboard. Every time the dog jumps up it casts a shadow on that door- except for the last time, when it's shadow should be darker because 1.) It's more to the left and 2.) It has a CAT, too-

What was probably more difficult was creating an exterior / lighting setup that looked genuinely natural- since I'm pretty darn sure they didn't do it all in one take, since there's no reason for them to- and if it were REAL natural light it would be changing.

Sweet stuff

Andrew Bellware said...

I hadn't noticed the cupboard. You're right.

In the commercial game they do big setups like the exterior all the time. I would presume the whole thing was shot on a stage though.

It looks to me like the cat was dropped in -- it isn't held like it was held by the scruff of the neck, if it were its butt would be hanging down and instead the cat lands as though held by its belly (although actually even then the legs would be further extended). I figure they matched the cat from various shots and stitched them together. Or built a CG cat. Or both.

Motion tracking the cat to the dog as it rides in the dog's mouth seems to me like could be one of those things which either just went together right away the first time -- or took days of aggravating frame-by-frame work.