Creative in association withGear Seven

The Production Mastery Behind Trebor's Strength-Giving Campaign

Production Agency
London, UK
Campaign by Ogilvy was directed by Rattling Stick's Andy Mcleod, with post production by Big Buoy and CG by Smoke & Mirrors Amsterdam
We’ve all been there: witnessed an infuriating driver take up two spaces in a cramped car park, had a fellow gym goer disrespect our personal space in the locker room or wanted to obliterate a bleeping self-service machine in the supermarket for repeatedly ‘seeking assistance’. These universally annoying life situations have allowed our disgruntled internal monologues to be answered in Trebor’s latest creative offering, ‘Give me Strength’.

The seven spot campaign, devised by Ogilvy, was directed by Rattling Stick’s Andy Mcleod, featuring post-production by Big Buoy with CG by Smoke & Mirrors Amsterdam. The leading protagonists within each scene are represented by actors with comedic sensibilities who commit cringingly annoying faux pas. Luckily enough for the resentful voiceover, they are quickly targeted one by one by larger than life versions of Trebor’s original iconic strong and soft mint packaging, as we heed the tagline, ‘Give me Strength’. Whether swung as a battering ram, swung from a crane or dropped from a great height, each pack is beautifully executed and brilliantly unexpected, adding a touch of dry humour in the process.

Whilst much of the destruction was completed on set, post-production held the key to enhancing the in-camera stunts which resulted in the consistently flawless execution across the completed campaign. 

Big Buoy lead flame artist and on-set supervisor, Jim Allen, comments: "One of the challenges we had to overcome on the shoot for the car park spot was the weather. The location only worked if the weather was overcast, but the forecast the night before was showing clear skies and sun.

"We knew the shadows the cranes would create would cause us a problem, so the alternative was to shoot in the opposite direction. This new angle mitigated the shadow issue, but brought about a very messy background, which would need to be replaced in post. 

"Annoyingly, the next day the sky was completely grey and overcast. It was also snowing and -14º. The extreme cold made it very difficult to work: changing camera settings and making notes was a bit like using frozen sausages rather than fingers. The Ricoh Theta which I use to shoot HDR images for the CGI team started operating very slowly and my IPad and stylus stopped responding completely. I had to warm them in front of an electric fire between takes to keep them working!

"Once the main action had been shot and the crew and gear cleared from the car park, I stayed behind and took some high res still images of the preferred background and some cars to strip into the shot background.

"The post process itself went very smoothly, the agency were great to work with and working with Andy is always a pleasure.”

Alongside smashing a real car in the production phase, plates of food, checkout tills and numerous stunt-men took a physical blow, with VFX used to recreate or enhance the iconic packaging and supply some extra drama by way of smoke, dust, sparks or shrapnel, naturally accentuating the produced chaos.

Smoke & Mirrors Amsterdam MD, Kenn MacRae, states that Trebor’s new ad is, "beautiful proof that a big pack shot ain’t always a bad thing”, adding that the team “loved swinging some CG Trebor into this wonderfully single-minded and beautifully-staged gem.”

One thing’s for sure: ‘Give Me Strength’ is certainly a campaign with impact.
Agency / Creative
Post Production / VFX
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