Jeff Payne, founder/mixer at Santa Monica’s audio post studio Eleven, helped bring dinosaurs to life — well, kind of — for two new Target spots, Dino Clash and Giant Steps. The spots coincided with the recent release of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.
Dino Clash begins with the shadow of a dinosaur roaming a toy city where its shadow meets another dino shadow. We then see a boy and a girl each holding a toy dino, giggling and roaring. The girl starts singing the Jurassic Park theme song, which is then taken over by the original music musical. It plays while the Jurassic World logo appears followed by the Target logo and the tagline, “Jurassic World gear is here.”
Giant Steps also begins with the shadow of a dinosaur roaming a suburban street toy street. The camera lands on a toy car that is suddenly crushed by a roaring boy’s tiny foot. He is wearing a dino mask and roaring, then his roar morphs into one of a “real” dinosaur.
Eleven was brought in after the final picture edit had been completed. While the sound design and music for this spot was done by Antfood, Payne says he did “a bit of additional sound design to ‘plus the spot.’ I added more aggressive booms for footsteps, remixed the city sounds, added some ambience under the kids scene and did some editing of the sound design from what was provided.
“The sound design splits were a challenge because the backgrounds were already pre-mixed i.e.: city ambiance was married with siren, etc., so I had to do some cutting around to have better control over the individual sounds.”
Payne says the main challenge of the job was editing the backend music to match the different art cards that were changing while they were mixing. “The goal is always to make the ‘hits’ hit correctly on the visual as well as making it in time musically.”
Payne used an Avid Pro Tools HD X with an Avid S6 console to complete the job.
If you watch broadcast television at all, you’ve likely seen the ubiquitous H&R Block spots featuring actor Jon Hamm of Mad Men fame. The campaign out of Fallon Worldwide features eight spots — all take place either on a film set or a studio backlot, and all feature Hamm in costume for a part. Whether he’s breaking character dressed in traditional Roman garb to talk about how H&R Block can help with your taxes, or chatting up a zombie during a lunch break, he’s handsome, funny and on point: use H&R Block for your tax needs. Simon McQuoid from Imperial Woodpecker directed.
The campaign’s audio post was completed at Eleven in Santa Monica. Eleven founder Jeff Payne worked the spots. “As well as mixing, I created sound design for all of the spots. The objective was to make the sound design feel very realistic and to enhance the scenes in a natural way, rather than a sound design way. For example, on the spot titled Donuts the scene was set on a studio back lot with a lot of extras moving around, so it was important to create that feel without distracting from the dialogue, which was very subtle and quiet. On the spot titled Switch, there was a very energetic music track and fast cutting scenes, but again it needed support with realistic sounds that gave all the scenes more movement.”
Payne says the major challenge for all the spots was to make the dialogue feel seamless. “There were many different angle shots with different microphones that needed to be evened out so that the dialogue sounded smooth.”
In terms of tools, all editing and mixing was done with Avid’s Pro Tools HDX system and S6 console. Sound design was done through Soundminer software.
Jordan Meltzer was assistant mixer on the campaign, and Melissa Elston executive produced for Eleven. Arcade provided the edit, Timber the VFX and post and color was via MPC.