Smirnoff – We Do Atomic

Another Outstanding Collaboration Between Riff Raff, The Sacred Egg and The Mill Smirnoff, the world’s #1 vodka, has announced multimarket…

Another Outstanding Collaboration Between Riff Raff, The Sacred Egg and The Mill

Smirnoff, the world's #1 vodka, has announced multimarket activations to boldly champion the power of the collective and reignite social connections around the world, in a celebration of the spark that's created when different people, flavours and ingredients come together.

With a little help from us, Smirnoff created a new global creative Atomic to underpin the activity, bringing their inclusive ethos to life through a playful "life is like a cocktail" metaphor. Embodying the spirit of togetherness, the spot shows a diverse group of people spontaneously turning into bubbles which mix together before turning back into human form and finally connecting with one another.

In order to create this intensely enjoyable spot, our team delved into the intricate world of transformations, where characters seamlessly morphed into four distinct spheres, each symbolizing an element of their costume. It may sound cliche, but from the day the scripts and The Sacred Egg’s treatment hit our inboxes, we were sold. The creative was pleasingly simple, but we knew the VFX production would be anything but...

It was clear from the outset that there was no margin for error when lining up the live action performances not only with each other, but also the garment ball characters they transition into.

We caught up with our exceptionally talented team to tell you a little more about this technically challenging but wildly rewarding film.

Pete Hodsman, VFX Supervisor discussed the "rigorous preplanning, testing and rehearsals key to ensuring that the performers were in exactly the right place at the right time for their transitions and interactions." Vittorio Barabani, VFX Supervisor, elaborates, "creating the seamless CG transitions between human forms and fabric balls proved to be the main challenge of this project. We quickly realized that a one-size-fits-all approach wouldn't suffice, as each performer posed unique challenges related to their distinct wardrobe choices."

Post shoot, Pete said the team "had a huge amount of backend preparatory work to rotoscope and roto-animate layers (sometimes up to 48 in the most complex of sequences)." This was entirely necessary to "enable the FX, Lighting, and Compositing teams to meticulously synchronize each individual inflation and deflation effect, as well as seamlessly integrate every CG element and interaction with the live-action performance," Vittorio added.

Selcuk Ergen, Head of CG, provides further insight.

"The main challenge with the vortex was to breathe life into thousands of fabric balls, instilling them with a fluid, tumbling essence. The task of managing the flow of such a large number of elements was taken head-on by our adept FX team. Through innovation and persistence, they crafted a workflow that not only allowed us pinpoint control over each ball's movement but also ensured the unique cloth attributes of every individual character were retained."

Crafting this metamorphosis was no walk in the park, but the team couldn't be happier with what we produced.

Check out this BTS film!


Client: Diagio – Smirnoff
SVP, Global Brand Director: Stephanie Jacoby
VO, Smirnoff Global: Nicola Heckles
Head of Smirnoff GB: Mark Jarman

Agency: McCann NY
CO CCO : Shayne Middleton
EVP, Global ECD: Pete Johnson
EVP, Global ECD: Cristina Reina
SVP Group Creative Director: Guilherme Racz
SVP Group Creative Director: Lucas Casao
SSSOC Creative Director: Camilla Ciappina
Executive Producer: Judi Nierman
Agency Producer: Christine Clavio

Production Company: Riff Raff
Director: The Sacred Egg
Owner: Matthew Fone
Executive Producer: Jane Tredget
Producer: Matthew Posner
PM: Lana Henry
DOP: Simon Chaudoir
1st AD: Jez Oakley
Production Designer: David Hindle
Costume Designer: Hannah Edwards
Choreographer: Charlie Mayhew
Drinks Stylist: Tara Garnell

VFX: The Mill London
Creative Director: Fabian Frank
Executive Producer: Louise Unwin
Senior Producer: Polly Roberts
Production Assistant: Ellie Georgiou
VFX Supervisor: Pete Hodsman, Vittorio Barabani
FX Supervisor: Selcuk Ergen, Keith Kamholz
FX Artists: Roman Vrbonsky, Dimitri Allonneau, Victor Skarbye, Thanos Topouzis
Lighting: Marc Greyvenstein, Tanjia Ljubimtseva
Animation: Chris Welsby, Rachel Ward, George Rigby, Alberto Lara
Rigging: Andreas Graichen
Lead Asset: Giacomo Cavalletti
Concept Artist: Jiyoung Lee
2D Artists: Giacomo Verri, Matthew McDougal
2D Junior Artists: Muhaddissa Hasham, Oliver Chenery, Henry N’Guetta, Jane Williams
Online: Alexis da Camara
Colourist: Pete Oppersdorff

VFX: The Mill Bangalore
Senior Producer: Agrata Sharma
Production Coordinator: Eldhose Joy
DFX Supervisor: Laique Quraishi
Project Lead: Rahul Vijay Desai
Asset Lead: Nishant Kumar
Asset Artists: Brijul Venugopalan Nair, Manukuru Manikanteswara, Ritika Das, Raj Sandeep Kadam, Karthik Bharat Mistry, Puli Satish
3D Generalists: Jigna Chandulal Saparia, Sunny Ankit Minj, Rajvaibhav, Suryakant Poyekar, Aditya Jaiswal
FX Supervisor: Biswajit Tarafder
FX Lead : Rakesh Herurkar
FX Artists: Ashutosh Shivdas, Gleaces Juvilian, Jayasri S, Polam Tirumala Reddy, Rohit Kumar, Sooraj A S
Animation Lead: Aniruddhya Chang & Kalpesh Bhikhabhai Patel
Animation Artists: Peddinti Venkata Srihari, Shane Marx Raja
Rigging Lead :Garlapati Yeswanth, Rigging Artists: Gurpreet Singh Panesar, Megha Minish Mehta, Vaibhav Vijay Patil, Vivekkumar Shobhnath Pal, Manthena Sainitesh Reddy
Bangalore Lighting: Pintoo Kumar
Comp Supervisor : Mayank Shekhar Tiwari
Comp Lead: Priyansh Gupta
Comp Artists: Anuj Bhandari, Rajashekhar Nagappa Nadiminti
Roto Lead: Rohit Charde
Roto Artists: Anita Khandare, Onkar Ghatage, Sandeep Mishra, Shrikant Jadhav, Shanu Hafizuddin Khalifa, Antony Bright K, Appu Gowda, Kishor Sasane, Rahul Prakash Srivastava, Sagar Suresh Ladi, Shiji L S, Shubham Mokashi, Sumit Kumar, Abhay Singh Chauhan, Akhil Gupta, Amulya Chandra Nayak, Ankit Shaw, Bhanu Prakash Singh Thakur, Dibin K Dharmendran, Kundan Sahu, Maniraj G, Manu P S, Mayur Chandrakant Kothawade, S Nikhilesh, Satish Yadav, Shanu Soni, Soumalya Bhattacharyya, Sudev S, Sudhir Balaram Jadhav, Vishvajeet Kocharekar, Yuvaraj N, Anurag Singh, Hetal Agarwala, Raghvendra Singh, Sriram Parameshwaran, Tushar Suresh Bhat
Prep Lead: Putta Mahesh
Prep Artists: Avinash Sangate, Chanda Kumari, Kumar Ranvir Sinha, Ritesh Patil
MMRA Supervisor: Devendra Naghate
MMRA Lead : Nikhil Kadam Sainil Sunil Borse
Matchmove artists: Anirudh Krishna Kurve, Anjit Kumar, Avaneetharan Karuppasamy, Chetan Balasaheb Kadam, Gautam Sarode, Karanveer Mahendru, Mukesh Gavade, Paras Pareshkumar Shah, Puppala Vinod Kumar, Rais Pinjari, Ram Kumar Sharma, Rutik Anil Sutar, Sathya Narayanan, Sayed Hussain, Shah Sunita, Suman Sahu, Sushant Lavhande, Swayam Prava Nayak, Upasana Choudhary, Vishal Shirsat
RotoAnim: Bappa Halder, G Jagdishwar Rao, Manish Chaudhary, Pramod Mahangare, Rahul Dusariya, Rijo Symon, Satish Gupta, Shubham Gorghate, Tankodra Jaykishan, Shanu Hafizuddin Khalifa

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