THE HITCHHIKER OF AVALON
Characters from Disney films become SL avatars to assist in their promotion...
Last Friday I made the trip to Avalon island so I could see the Second Life prototype of Marvin from last year's Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy for myself-- originally mentioned and full-disclosured here-- and as promised, he was the picture-perfect rendition of the bulbuous, depressed robot of the film. During the movie's production, Fizik Baskerville and his team created the Marvin avatar based on the production designer's specs, using that to plan a marketing campaign for their client, Disney. "We did that not only for Hitchhiker's... we did it for Pirates of the Carribean 2/3 and Chronicles of Narnia." Using SL's avatar customization tools, "Within a short period of time we have [characters from these Disney films] walking around those ideas as avatars."
Some further notes by Baskerville on the process-- and the current state of film promotion-- after the break.
"We had it as an avatar," Fizik tells me, standing beside Marvin. "We used Poser files." A member of his team waddled around inside the Marvin avatar, to give them ideas. "All the poses we made, we used for mock-ups for the advertising boards," Baskerville continues, "plus promo item development, interactive experience, etc. About 12 different things." And though this project was for the branding and promotion of the movie, the film's directors, the oddly-named team known as Hammer and Tongs, lent Fizik their insights.
"The creative process is beyond the editing suite," Baskerville explains. "Most directors/production companies are totally part of the entire supply chain, from the script to the final poster. Good film marketing these days is about creating an extension to the film."