Maybe you’ve haven’t heard the name Blackhawk Engagement Solutions, but you’ve definitely interacted with their products. You know the rack of gift cards you see in the grocery store checkout aisle? That’s them. They’re the undisputed gift card people. And this year they launched Happy Cards, which is like a gift card on a sugar high—multiple brands in one card catered to the recipient type. They called us up to make a fun, poppy TV spot to launch Happy Cards nationwide. And since Happy Cards are a brand new product, we got the chance to help them make a powerful first impression on consumers. They asked us to embody happiness in a TV spot and show how giving Happy Cards means you’re giving recipients choices.
We thought about doing your typical studio shoot where happy-as-heck actors in brightly colored digs jump up and down. But that’s been done, especially around the holidays. We realized we’d need a unique approach if we were going to stand out to a TV audience. We had a tight timeline to work with—only 45 days—so we put some constraints on ourselves to make production as smooth as possible. What can we do that feels fun and different, that we can shoot in a single day in a studio, and that doesn’t involve any actor dialogue (just a narrator)? Hmmm… how about we put actors on humongous ‘Happy Cards’ and use stop-motion to create the illusion of gymnastics-level physical reactions? Sounds good. Let’s rock! Shooting this was super fun. We had crew members “animating” the bodies of our actors frame-by-frame and we used DragonFrame to get the motions looking crispy clean. Fun Fact: The hamburger that gets eaten at the end is a fake! It’s probably the coolest prop we’ve ever used. We shipped it in from Ohio for the shoot and now it sits on our office windowsill. So, uh, any burger companies out there need a video?
- Happy Cards
- Live Action Stop Motion