Skylanders Swap Force Trailer (2013/2:06)

Skylanders Swap Force Trailer


PRODUCED AND ANIMATED AT LOGAN, 2013


First, the Skylanders folks came up with the brilliant idea to make their toys swappable: Each Swap Force character’s top determines how they fight, and each bottom determines how they move. You can put them together in 256 combinations.

Then, 72andSunny came up with the equally brilliant idea to use Fat Boy Slim’s epic "Weapon of Choice" song; and to have the characters put on a stage show. Of course, the video had to start with a reverent reference to Spike Jonze’s classic video for the song. Except that in our piece, Christopher Walken is an octopus pirate.

The drama then develops when the game’s resident evil, Kaos, wants to but cannot seem to hook up with any of the awesome bottoms. Instead, he gets paired up with tutus, duck feet and baby legs.

As always with well-written comedy (1 2 3), this piece pretty much directed itself, thanks to my collaborators on the client and agency side, and the fabulous character animators at Logan. A few months later, I also directed the TV launch campaign for Swap Force.

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Client: Activision Publishing, Los Angeles
Chief Executive Officer: Eric Hirshberg
Chief Marketing Officer: Tim Ellis
VP of Marketing: John Coyne
Director of Consumer Marketing: Hjalmar Hedman

Agency: 72andSunny, Los Angeles
Partner/CCO: Glenn Cole
Executive Creative Director: Frank Hahn
Creative Director/Writer: Tim Wolf
Lead Writer: Zach Hilder
Designers: Drea Schneider, Cerra Buckholz
Director of Film Production: Sam Baerwald
Senior Film Producer: Laura Ferguson
Director of Business Affairs: Christine Claussen
Business Affairs Manager: Christina Rust

Production Company: Logan
Director: Jens Gehlhaar
Producer: Jake Hibler
VFX Supervisor: Julien Brami
Flame Artist: Rob Winfield
Designers: Gregory Mitchell, Melvina Wong
Storyboard Artist: Vincent Lee
Editors: Lee Gardner, Tai Erskine, James Connelly
Light/Render: Ryan Kirkwood, Patrick Vidal, Benoit Vincent
Nuke Compositors: Scott Trosclair, Aya Peard, Rachel Keyte
Modelers: Diego Melgar, Alex Rayes, Tadao Masuyama, Josh Elmore
Character Animation: Michael Cawood, Daniel Loeb, Matt Connelly, Shigeru Mizoi, Sei Sato
Rigger: Kiel Figgins
3D FX: Alvaro Segura, Denis Gauthier