Plane Stupid Polar Bears

Plane Stupid, a network of grassroots groups that take non violent direct action against aviation expansion, has attracted worldwide attention for their campaign with “Polar Bears”, a disturbing online and cinema commercial. The UK group is campaigning to end short haul flights, airport expansion, aviation advertising, and is prepared to use the environmental movement’s favourite animal to do it. The Plane Stupid Polar Bears ad begins with strange objects can be seen falling from the sky. Gradually the viewer is able to see that the objects are, in fact, polar bears. As the ad continues, the bears meet their brutal deaths, crashing against buildings, leaving a trail of blood, and landing on cars. An average European flight produces over 400 kg of greenhouse gases for every passenger, the weight of an adult polar bear.

Plane Stupid Polar Bears

Plane Stupid Polar Bears Credits

The Polar Bears campaign was developed at Mother, London. Robert Saville, creative partner at Mother, said: “We wanted to confront people with the impact that short-haul flights have on the climate. We used polar bears because they are a well understood symbol of the effect that climate change is having on the natural world.”

Filming was shot by director Daniel Kleinman via Rattling Stick with producer Johnnie Frankel.

Daniel answers questions about cruelty to polar bears by saying, “We sourced all the polar bears in Wardour Street in London, they live in a virtual zoo at MPC. No bear was alive when we dropped them from a great height and no pixels were hurt during filming. We did have to mop up the blood though.”

Editor was Adam Spivey at The Quarry.

Post production was done at The Moving Picture Company by producer Scott Griffin, VFX supervisors Jake Mengers, 3D VFX Team: Vicky Osborn, Ahmed Gharraph, James Bailey, Kieran Belshaw, Georgios Chevourim, Richard Clegg, Andreas Graichen, Mark Harrison, Alex Kim, Adam Leary, Jorge Montiel, Tom O’Flaherty, Wayne Simmons, Stephen Murphy, Christoph Schinko, 2D VFX Team: Suzanne Jandu, Kelly Bruce, Steve Davis, Greg Howe-Davies, Alasdair McNeill, Stephen Newbold.

Jake Mengers, VFX supervisor at MPC, said: “The sequence used computer-generated ‘rag dolls’ which emulate the actual skeletal structure of bears, once they were falling as we wanted them to, the computer-generated ‘puppets’ were overlaid with hand animation to allow us to refine their anatomy, tweaking subtleties to make their movements more believable and using nCloth simulation to make the flesh wobble on impact.”

Sound was produced by Anthony Moore at Factory and Andy Humphreys at 750 MPH.