Football passions can’t always be confined to the field. In The Other Game, released to promote Nike during Euro 2004, some unruly pre-match rivalry breaks out between Brazil and Portugal.
Swedish director Fredrik Bond brings flashes of manly humour to
Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Roberto Carlos, Denilson, Figo and Cristian
Ronaldo battling it out in a pre-match tussle, down the tunnel and
onto the pitch, until the frustrated referee halts it by tackling
the near-unstoppable Ronaldinho.
A core Mill team of four worked for over two months on the
post-production. By replicating a crowd of 500 extras, lead 3D
artist Jordi Bares generated about 93,000 of them. He studied real
games and the national psychologies so he could make each 3D fan
behave right; shot DV footage of football crowds; and gave each fan
artificial intelligence so they'd interact realistically. The 300
textures he designed were used in multiple combinations, so no one
person was ever duplicated. Individual actions were determined by
one of 108 movements generated in motion capture and depending on
whether a CG fan was male, female, a policeman, etc. Jordi also
allowed for group behaviour - making Brazilians more elated and
energetic when all together - and calculated the relative numbers
and distribution of Portuguese to Brazilian fans.
The Mill 3D team also worked on football paraphernalia, such as
flags and streamers. And for extra dynamism Mill 2D speeded up
certain action shots. One vari-speeded shot was so successful it
became an ad in its own right: the Ronaldinho teaser, which aired
before this main campaign.
More Mill 2D magic created ideal scenes, like the tunnel action
spilling out onto the pitch, for which the actual race-ground
foreground was replaced with shots of the football pitch.