MUSIC VIDEO DIRECTION & ANIMATION

Great Escape

Intergalactic surfing, explosions & outer space martial art battles.

Client

WONDERboom

Categories

Music Video, Live Action, Direction, 2-D Animation, Illustration

 

Project Background

 

WONDERboom is South Africa’s longest-running rock band and is responsible for a long list of hits which have become South African classics. Having grown up as a fan, I was thrilled when they asked me to work with them.

The Challenge

 

In celebration of the band’s 20 year anniversary, they wanted to have an animated music video created for their new album’s first single, titled ‘Great Escape’.

The Idea

 

We scripted an epic action story around a couple escaping from an alien planet. The adventure of a heroine on a mission to save her man from intergalactic imprisonment, became the metaphor for how we often go beyond our means to save the very thing that leads to our demise. The idea was born to work in a stop-motion style, that would somehow combine illustrations and live footage, to visualise the tale.

Look Development  & Styleframes

This lead to the final look of the video: a black and white animated piece which was brought to life by drawing single frames over actual footage.

Storyboard

 

The 60-frame storyboard laid out the sequences in detail, and visualised how the band members’ signature stage moves were now turned into battle moves for the action scenes. Jumping with guitars and swinging mics became self-defense techniques while fighting alien enemies!

Live Action Shoot

 

The tightly-planned production was comprised of two parts which were executed in two cities: In Cape Town I shot the actors performing the scenes from the entire storyboard. Determination, energy, love, despair…all was captured on camera. The second part was shot in Johannesburg. We captured the band on green screen, acting out their parts as allies of our heroes. My love for kung-fu films and action sports like surfing inspired the fighting & escape sequences, and the creation of the world that it all takes place in tied the whole visual concept together.

Animation

 

The footage was then slowed down to 8 fps before I drew over all the relevant frames to create the animated look. To achieve this, I had to work in a well-planned systemic process which broke down both the illustration & animation phases in sub-sections of creative execution over several weeks.

Results

 

The results exceeded the expectations of both the band and myself, as well as their fans! With our animated music video for ‘Great Escape’, WONDERboom were back at the top of the South African charts and all set to release what would become their best album yet. It paved the way for a series of highly successful creative collaborations and a close friendship with the band.

Keen to work together?

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