Tools of the Trade
In conjunction with our feature film World Debut, we were asked to create a piece of ancillary content that would fit more into the edu-tainment world. We landed on the idea of telling the stories of how the technology of the new Olympic sports (skateboarding, surfing and rock climbing) had evolved to create the gear we know today. Rather than spanning the seemingly limitless range of gear that each sport uses, we focused on one simple piece of equipment for each sport: the skateboard wheel, the surf fin, and the rock climbing anchor.
CLIENTS Youtube Originals and Olympic Channel
PARTNERS Boardwalk Pictures and Madica Productions
Lectures are never fun, no matter how interesting the subject matter is. Our approach with this piece was to find the characters and main events that led to the ground-breaking evolutions of these tools. We wanted to give each piece of equipment an interesting, compelling story arc that would subvert from the didactic onslaught of information that was needed for these stories to be historically accurate and to make sense. We wrote out each episode with a voice of god narrator who carried us through the stories, bringing us through the early days of mountain climbing in 1865, to the beaches of Waikiki in the early 1900s, all the way to the streets of Venice in the 1960s. This narrator is complemented by modern day live-action footage we captured, stylized archive, and most importantly, a hand drawn, 2-d animated world. To tie these three stories into one coherent piece, we brought in some of the stars featured in World Debut for an interstitial scene where they introduce the piece of equipment we will learn about.
We rooted these stories in an animated world. Thanks to creative ideas and a very talented art director and illustration team, we re-created moments that had been lost in the void of history in an abstract, campy, and never before seen way. We integrated cut-out archive images with hand-drawn elements to create fun collages and simulated real-life characters. We occasionally segued into live action footage, but always kept an animated border or added animated elements. In the interstitial scenes with professional athletes, we had them standing in front of an animated background and interacting with hand-drawn objects so that we never leave the unique world of the film.