Honda ran “Forecast”, a television commercial featuring the 2011 Honda CR-V, in selected regions across America throughout Fox’s official broadcast coverage of Super Bowl XLV on Sunday February 6. This time of year, people all over the country are sitting there looking at some pretty miserable weather forecasts. Honda wanted to take them inside the world of one of these forecasts and literally show that the CR-V can handle whatever nature offers, a timely and pertinent message.
Click on the image below to play the Honda Forecast video.
Viewers are teased with mysterious, giant type, that’s only partially visible in the sky, while the CR-V drives from one set of weather conditions to the next. In the end, we reveal that the type is part of the weather forecast graphics.
The Forecast ad was developed at RPA by chief creative officer David Smith, group creative directors Joe Baratelli and Jason Sperling, senior art director Hobart Birmingham, copywriter Perrin Anderson, executive producer Gary Paticoff, and producer Phung Vo.
Filming/animation were produced by director/editor Ben Go via Brand New School, with director of photography Bill Bennett, VFX supervisor Vadim Turchin, West Coast executive producer Jason Cohon, line producer Jane Van Dyke, production supervisor Kenia Gutierrez, VFX producers Amy Russo and Josh Wakefield, production designer Jeff Higinbotham, matte painters Andrew Park and Eric Urquhart, designers Tiffany Dantin, Kris Wong, Ken Quemel, Patrick Hruby, Sakona Kong, Wakako Ichinose and Ugo Nonis, 3D/VFX artists John Sadler, Emil Nilsson, Ryan Kirkwood, lead compositor Ergin Kuke, Flame artist Matt Lydecker, production coordinator Italia Piefederici, and assistant editor Brenden Mendez.
The spot features “Rescue Song (RAC Remix)” from Mr. Little Jeans.
Filming was shot in an ambitious single-day live-action shoot in and around California’s Santa Ynez Airport. Director Ben Go talks about the shoot. “We really wanted to grab the audience’s attention instantly with the beauty and sophistication of the spot. To achieve that, we opted for a look that’s both real and graphic, both stylized and photoreal… a good mixture of fact and fantasy. On location, we wet down the road, and had practical snow on it as well… then we composited partly realistic and partly graphic rain and snow in the finished shots. The sunny environment in the original plate we shot was also replaced with different CG environments to match the different weather conditions.”
On location, the BNS team used the ARRI Alexa digital camera system to capture HD source footage. Also, a crane car called The Edge System from Performance Filmworks allowed the crew to capture the moving vehicle from various angles as it appeared in different situations at and near the picturesque airport.
For BNS VFX supervisor Vadim Turchin and many studio artists, the first steps in post were to track the live-action scenes and rotoscope the background and the CR-V. A matte painting was created for the background, which was projected onto 3D geometry in Maya. All the elements were then put together in After Effects, along with additional plates, particle effects, and initial color correction. Final color was handled in Autodesk Flame.