Wasteminster

A DOWNING STREET DISASTER

Play Reel
Play Making Of
CLIENT
Greenpeace
FOCUS
CG Production
DATE
May 2021

ABOUT

“THERE IS NO GREATER DUTY FOR ANY NATION THAN PROTECTING OUR PEOPLE AND OUR PLANET,” - UK PRIME MINISTER, BORIS JOHNSON. That’s what he said.

MADNESS

Imagine drowning in a plastic sea of our own making. Being unable to surface, to breathe, due to the sheer weight and volume of our trash. Wasteminster is exactly that- a unique depiction of what would happen if the plastic waste the UK exports each day was instead dumped on Downing Street. 

 

Voiced by two of Britain’s best impressionists, Jon Culshaw and Matt Forde, the animation is intended to raise a smile at the impressions of Boris Johnson and Michael Gove, and to place the politician’s dummy-personas in direct conflict with the invisible consequences of their own actions and raise awareness of the plastic pollution crisis the UK is creating overseas.

 

By taking critical big data about humanity's impact on our planet and creating a visual representation, we lift the veil of a reality thus far unseen.

Method

With satellite imagery, MNM created a digital twin of 10 Downing Street to serve as the location for the commercial. Over 60 unique mannequin models were created, with special attention given to the Boris and Gove mannequins. 

 

Using our virtual camera rig, we were able to work closely with the directors at Studio Birthplace, allowing us to organically find the best angles to portray each scene and retain that immediate natural creativity you find on traditional film sets. Using 67.7 million digital pieces of plastic, we choreographed and directed the plastic waste wave with the help of bespoke software and tools.

 

In total, the two minute film required roughly 14,600 hours of render time, or 20 months, to create the final shots. The CO2 emitted by our render farm was compensated for.

Residence of Downing Street

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Gathering references of the political figures. Our artists sculpted versions of Boris Johnson, Micheal Gove all the way to Larry the cat mannequins in Zbrush followed by texturing in Substance Painter.

To achieve the instant recognizability, we had to find a balance between resemblance to the politicians and keeping the figures mannequin-like.

Over 80 unique mannequin models were created for this film in order to ensure there was a large crowd that did not look repetitive.


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Downing Street, Wasteminster

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We carefully studied references online to build an exact replica of Downing Street, especially # 12, 11 & 10 Downing buildings. We used Substance for most of the texture work except for the hero assets which required much higher resolution. For that, we approached it procedurally and traditionally, using good old curvature, AO & triplanners.

Impact

With 6 million views in five days, our “Wasteminster” concept gets the often social-media lauded tag of being “viral”. Vimeo’s Staff Pick, and shot’s Campaign and Ad of the week, The Greenpeace investigation spurred Turkey — where Great Britain sends 40% of its plastic waste export — to announce its ban on UK plastic waste imports.

BEHIND THE SCENE

Go ahead, take a peek at our wireframes. Avoid the plastic waste on the way out.

CREDITS

Thank you, to all whom we've crossed paths with on this magnificient work.

/// 01

CG Production → Method & Madness

Executive Producer → Tan Wen Hao

Producer → Christian Fontaine

CG Director → Alex Scollay

Previs Artist → Kevin Chua

CG Artist → Abdul Rahman, Pilipino Reyes, Fabio Wasques, JiaJun Haw

Compositor → Simon ‘Duck’ Rafin

/// 02

Concept & Production → Studio Birthplace

Directors → Sil van der Woerd, Jorik Dozy

Producer → Sean Lin

V.O. Boris Johnson → Matt Forde

V.O. Michael Gove → Jon Culshaw

Sound Design → Wavefarer Audio

Music → Onn San

/// 03

Co-Production & Director Representation UK → Park Village

MD/Executive Producer → Tom Webb

Executive Producer → Adam Booth

Brand Partnership Consultant → Peter Myers

Recording Studio → GCRS London

V.O. Sound Engineer → Gary Turnbull

UP NEXT

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