Psyop's new design, animation and mixed media company Blacklist recently completed production on a package for ESPN-NBA with Wieden+ Kennedy-NY. The first project for Blacklist's newest director, Cisma, the full package includes 4 TV spots, broadcast deliverables, and an outdoor print piece which will be painted in Downtown LA. The first deliverables began airing during Thanksgiving. The newest spot, "Contenders" began airing on New Year's and will be running through the end of January.
Relying on minimal color and literal storytelling via animation, the latest in promotional spots for the NBA playoffs of ESPN builds the suspense for sport's fans everywhere with "Contenders." Offering a little more than just hype for the upcoming games, the piece also displays an interesting combination of fantastically complex and yet simple animations, in which thick likes transform into different images and snake about the screen, making for a personified tale of the narrator's monologue.
A collaborative venture between Cisma and two other colleagues in Brazil, the design and illustration of the ESPN-NBA package is a mix of 2D and 3D with the final animation completed in cell. Being careful to avoid a cartoony feel, Cisma sought inspiration in the animation styling of Peter Chung's Aeon Flux and other series such as Thundercats, Samurai Champloo and Presstube.
With a crew of 27 storyboard artists, concept designers, key framers, 3D animators, compositors, flash animators, assistant director and 2 producers, Cisma was able to create a frame by frame animation-- a perfect process for metamorphosis.