Sometimes the same idea pops up at several places more or less at the same time. Two weeks ago we all saw the craftsmanship that went into the million Pound John Lewis Christmas commercial – “the Watership Down remake” – created by Adam&EveDDB. It looked like an animation, but was made physically, by hand, with cutout, hand drawn figures and miniature trees. This week we received a commercial from 180 Amsterdam, RSA (directed by Rob Blishen), and MPC (VFX) for the Sony PSP game Tearaway that from a craft-perspective has a similar idea behind it. Of course, there’s less detail (read: budget), the tone of voice and look feel are quite different and there’s more CG involved, but both purposely used a physical, rather than animated world, as the basis of their story.
Tag Archive: 180
Tony Bartolucci has made a switch from DDB New York to 180 Amsterdam, becoming Senior Art Director. Bartolucci has worked in New York for 10 years, working for BBDO, Campfire and DDB, on brands like Starbucks, New Balance, Verizon, Snapple, New York Lottery and Foot Locker. In his new role he will work – among other brands – on Asics and Qatar Airways. For the latter brand 180 recently launched a sponsor campaign for FC Barcelona. Bartolucci about his new position: “180 Amsterdam is an unbelievable agency when it comes to reputation and work, and I’m happy to be a part of this unique and ongoing success story. As a driven artist and photographer I am looking forward to be in the middle of Amsterdam’s creative melting pot and getting inspiration for my work.” We hope our city will be at least as inspiring as ‘New Amsterdam.’ Enjoy!
This ad for Turkish Airlines with Messi and all the other FC Barcelona stars….oh wait, we mean Qatar Airways, of course. Forgive us the mistake, but half a year ago Messi was on a plane competing with Kobe to win the charm of a kid for Turkish Airlines – apparently no exclusivity was claimed… Then again, Messi is featured in every other commercial that flirts with football. And since this one revolves around FC Barcelona, Qatar Airways couldn’t really go around him. The big difference however is the production value – this must have cost a few barrels of oil! But quite an attractive idea as well, to turn the FC Barcelona shield into a country – with towns called Tika and Taka, and a policemen that draws a yellow card for speeding. It was created by 180 Amsterdam, directed by Nick Gordon, and produced by Somesuch & Co. The abundant visual enhancements were done by MPC and the auditory ones by Wave Amsterdam.
180 and production company Minivegas created this 60 second commercial for Sony’s new “horror survival” game The Last of Us. It took us a while to figure what exactly is happening, but fortunatley the press release explains that the character looking anxiously into the camera is slowly turning into a personage from the game. CG-wise quite a creative challenge for Minivegas that had to merge real life images with the game graphics.
Sony Playstation introduces a new Harry-Potter-like game, “Book of Spells,” that turns your (motion) controller into a Magic Wand. This commercial – created by 180 Amsterdam – enlarges the qualities of the wand by giving it powers beyond the game – turning you into a rat and a cat into a huge chunk of cheese. Not the fattest concept we’ve ever seen, but the weirdness of it definitely carries a certain appeal. Directed by Jeff Low (Biscuit Filmworks), and 3D animation by Glassworks Amsterdam.
Remember when we used to send digital Christmas cards with a tune inside? Very web 1.0. This is the 3.0 version; a Western Union platform that allows you to perform a virtual duet and produce a personalized music video with Snoop Dogg, Timbaland, Sunidhi Chauhan or K’naan – at the time of writing not all songs are released yet, for that matter. You upload a photo of yourself, pick an artist, and a song. Then you karaoke it – with the lyrics streamed on the screen – and your personal avatar singing the duet is sent to family and loved ones – together with the money, of course. Simple and sweet. Created by 180.
With a track record like Tribal DDB it’s hardly a surprise that they became interactive agency of the year at Eurobest this year. Throughout the year they’ve been making great and award winning work for KLM and Philips. The climax of their award victory march has been Eurobest this week; out of the 12 nominations they won 9 awards – for Philips Obsessed with Sound 4, for ‘Wake up the town‘ 2, and for KLM Tile & Inspire 3. What really took us by surprise was ‘The Legendary Making of The Date’ for Heineken by Wieden+Kennedy winning a Grand Prix in film. We already noticed that every big budget commercial nowadays gets a making of to create some relatively cheap content – and PR for the agency, for that matter. But actually winning a Grand Prix with the side project of a campaign is quite something. Back then we said: “Not your standard ‘making of’, but one made with ‘joie de vivre’ and lots of CG jokes. If we weren’t already, this would want to make us work in advertising”. The commercial itself, ‘The Date’, also won silver in film, and ‘The Entrance’ won gold. We were told that AKQA’s London office sent in the work of AKQA Amsterdam, so you could say that the Grand Prix and Gold in Mobile for Heineken Star Player (social betting on football matches), also went to Amsterdam. DBB and 180 won silver in film for ‘Old Lady’ (Volkswagen) and ‘Marked for Life’ respectively. We also had the Epica awards last week. W+K won 5 Epica’s plus a Grand Prix for ‘The Entrance’ and ‘The Date’ combined. Again W+K won an award (gold) for the ‘extra’s’ – some extra mini scripts around ‘The Entrance’. 180’s Marked for Life won gold and silver. Finally Lemz did well with 2 silver and 2 bronze for IKEA 365, KLM Live Reply, and ‘Children see things differently‘. In total Amsterdam won 22 Epica awards. One final note to Eurobest and Epica; can you guys please merge? There’s no reason to have two identical continental award shows – except making lots of money, of course…
Last Wednesday the ADCN (Art Director’s Club Nederland) hosted a session in ‘De Kring’ on the Rembrandtplein dubbed ‘XXX Expat’ (XXX is part of the city’s shield), with the noble aim of bringing two parts of the Amsterdam ad industry together; the Dutch and the expats. Some would say these two groups are surely two sides to the same coin, others would say these are separate entities with little or nothing in common other than geography. The somewhat lacking relationship between these two communities has been well documented over the years, yet despite this, nothing has ever quite bridged that gap, except of course – modest as we are – Amsterdam Ad Blog. Lode Schaeffer (ECD at Indie), new chairman to the ADCN is determined to branch out and readdress the balance. The idea was simple; get five speakers from leading agencies in Amsterdam to each give a presentation about the experience of living and working in Amsterdam as an expat.
180 co-founder Alex Melvin passed away peacefully in his Amsterdam home last Friday, August 12. He was 53. Alex, who bravely fought melanoma for three years, was comforted by family and close friends. He leaves behind his wife, Alison Melvin, and three loving children. For more than a decade, Alex played an integral role in the agency’s growth including his work with marquee global client Adidas. In 2007, he and the other two founders Chris Mendola and Guy Hayward launched a U.S. office in Santa Monica, CA. Alex was of enormous importance to the city of Amsterdam; not only did he found an agency that put the city internationally on the map, he also embraced the city as the true representation of his agency. In an interview with us in 2009, during the Boards Conference that he co-hosted with Indie’s Mark Aink, he explained that the resemblance was so strong, because just like 180 the city of Amsterdam has always been a city of talent, ideas and international trade. With a big smile he added: “and I also believe Amsterdam is home to 180 different nationalities, but you’d have to double check that with the chamber of commerce”. In that interview – and all the chats thereafter – we got to know Alex as a modest, good humoured, and overall amiable guy. We’ll miss him. There will be a memorial for Alex on Friday, August 19th at 3 p.m. at De Rode Hoed, Keizersgracht 102, Amsterdam. He will be buried in his native Scotland. His family has set up a Facebook page for people to post memories of Alex.