Client: Diet Coke
Agency: Mother, London
Production Company: Rokkit, London / Legs, New York
Q&A with Legs on the 15-spot Diet Coke campaign for Ugly Betty
Q: What was the original brief?
LEGS: Mother London presented us with a brief that combined high fashion marionettes and heavy machinery. Pret-a-porter, puppets and pyrotechnics is our kind of party.
Q: Tell me about the inspiration behind Eleanor and how she was created.
LEGS: We combined forces with an amazing company called Puppet Heap who specialize in beautifully crafted, customized marionettes. We needed Eleanor, our star puppet, to be a one of a kind character. Our inspiration was Bjork meets Rambo with ultra-glam couture accessories.
Q: Tell me about the production process.
LEGS: This was one of our most intense and rewarding collaborations yet. We shot this in the Legs studio in NYC, so it was literally all Legs on deck! Since the project required so much attention to detail, we all took different roles; Georgie focussed on the art direction, from designing the outfits, cutting the hair and doing the makeup on Eleanore to making background props. Geremy worked extensively on the conceptual building side and aced the music and voice overs in post. Greg added gorgeous cinematic style, working with the DP on lighting and camera moves as well as providing instant on-line edits with the dailies while we were shooting each set up to make sure the effects fit in such a tight time frame. And Adam turned our studio in to a fully functioning puppet production house: There was a full-on puppet fashion sweatshop in one room, pyrotechnics and props in another, Mother London's remote headquarters in another, puppet stages being built in our shooting area, and Legs & Rokkit production mania everywhere in between. The Legs office was a buzzing, happy place to be..not unlike Fraggle Rock.
We were also really blessed with an incredible crew on this job. From pyrotechnic wizards to a giant seamstress making miniature clothes to tirelessly silly puppeteers, it was the most fun kind of hard work. Our art direction crew, led by Jeff Everett with support from master craftsman, John Ferguson made serious magic happen, creating incredible miniature sets and practical, working mini-weapons.
Q: Anything else I should know?
LEGS: Peter, Susan and Mike from Mother London were super creative and gracious to work with. Their thorough and professional focus really pushed us to bring their vision to life in the most pleasant way. We were thrilled with the experience and hope to collaborate with them again in the very near future. We were also lead by Luke from Rokkit, who served as our backbone throughout the whole process.