From the tense streets of Gangs of London to the exquisite ballroom of Bridgerton and otherworldly town of Hawkins from Stranger Things, the latest Sky x Netflix spot takes viewers through the fantastical worlds within our TV sets.
Following a couple as they travel through these fictional scenes, the campaign highlights the endless adventures that are available to us on Sky and Netflix.
In this interview, FAMILIA director David Mellor and executive producer Toby Walsham lift the lid on what it takes to build seamless worlds between reality and our favourite TV shows.
LBB> Congratulations on another successful Sky x Netflix spot! What was it like working with the team again?
David> This campaign was like getting back into a comfortable pair of shoes. The backbone of this project was collaboration and as a director who really values that, we brought together the same team and it really shows. The matching of camera and art direction by Jordan Buck and Caroline Story to the show footage is excellent, in that you don’t even question whether our shots were part of the original footage. I love the challenge of breaking down reverse angles to introduce our characters into the scenes, weaving together a seamless story.
Toby> This time around we look to push the creative to new heights, taking the shoot out of the studio really helped add some scope and depth to our scenes which we feel added real value in the finished project.
Making ideas better together is what FAMILIA is all about. Collaboration is at the heart of everything we do. Working together again with the passionate team at Sky Creative made the process all that more enjoyable. There is a great synergy that has formed between Sky and FAMILIA off the back of working together on multiple campaigns now, often bringing challenges along the way but always materialising into films we are proud of at the very end. David Mellor brought it all to the table, he didn’t leave a stone unturned in his endeavour for perfection. This VFX background and directing expertise made for a perfect storm of skills for a project like this.
LBB> The theme for this campaign centres around ‘end of series blues’ - tell us about the concept and ideation process.
Toby> This was another partnership between FAMILIA and Sky Creative bringing Sky and Netflix together in one place. The spot follows a couple as they discover and collect new shows to combat the ‘End of Series Blues’. Made for the UK market, the couple travel through the worlds of popular shows including Succession, Gangs of London, Bridgerton and Stranger Things. In each world, they witness the hero characters of the shows, in tense, stunning and exciting moments which entice them to collect a tile of the stories to then choose from to watch later.
LBB> To ensure the spot looked seamless, you had to match the quality of the worlds on set with the high quality aesthetics of the TV shows themselves. How did you achieve this?
David> Creatively it was challenging because we took a couple from reality in their living room to these different worlds, and we had to join those together to create a really interesting and fun journey.
Toby> We shot reverse angles from really famous shows and in order to match it so seamlessly we had to look at everything with such attention to detail. This required us to source the exact cameras and lenses that were used on the shows.
Ultimately it’s an homage - we’re inserting characters into existing stories. We have to be respectful of the other directors and producers who have spent their time crafting the awesome existing work. That doesn’t mean our hands are completely tied, but it does mean that for every vignette there had to be multiple ideas for our character’s story - some pushing the boundaries too far! These become a discussion and collaboration with the different production companies to find the right tone, maintaining excitement without stepping on the toes of their original visions.
David> It was a bit of a detective process to have to break down the shots that we wanted to use from the TV shows and then match them completely, whether that’s wardrobe or dressing, the lighting of the environment, the lenses on the cameras… all those details were looked into to create a cohesive match in the edit.
LBB> What were your personal highlights from shooting this project?
Toby> What's not to like? South Africa during the peak of summer, big art builds, shooting on airfields, and vintage cars. As far as jobs go this was a dream job.