HOUSE OF BRICKS
This week saw the premiere of a few more Sesame Street segments with backgrounds and animation produced by Magnetic Dreams Studio. It's always a treat to be able to dive into a classic Sesame parody and marry the aesthetic of the show with that of another pop culture institution, in this case the very adult Netflix series HOUSE OF CARDS. AND, we got to filter it through the tale of the 3 Little Pigs. Marty Robinson's "Frank Underwolf" may be my favorite recent Muppet performance.
You can see the full spot above and here is the original HOUSE OF CARDS opening for reference. Re-creating the time lapse montage was my most enjoyable task for this spot.
The first challenge was to re-imagine the Capitol Building, Supreme Court, and White House as constructed of straw, sticks, and bricks. These are my concept designs, final modeling was done by Stephanie Miranda Goldstein.
But, the real test was for us to destroy them. All three buildings needed to be built and rigged to be blown apart. Our simulator Wenie Rahardja did all of the heavy lifting here, working out the particle dynamics with Stephanie under the guidance of Creative Director, Rickey Boyd. Additional animation by Jamie Coakley. Here's a cool sneak peek at our Capitol Building sim in one of its later stages.
This week also featured the return of 2 new segments of Super Grover 2.0.
"Fruit" starred a pineapple painter who allowed me to include some paintings of food-related inside jokes from Sesame's past.
"Underwater Bowling" featured the amusing premise of an Octopus and Shrimp unable to keep their pins from floating away. Brad Applebaum and Ayan Akbar on modeling and Josh Stafford and Judd Eschliman on compositing did a fantastic job capturing the detail, lighting, and spirit of the location.
I shared the above model sheet by Rickey and myself to give a sense of the production process involved in one of these spots. For more on this pipeline, check out the video below. Our production manager John Hamm illustrates what it requires to take a Sesame short from green screen to your screen.
pipeline process from John Hamm on Vimeo.