Coming off the fantastic success of Blue Pixel's commercial and in-game video campaign for the Wizards' 2007-2008 NBA playoff run, we were asked to create the game open and commercials for the 2008-2009 regular season.
The Wizards came up with a new slogan, “Character, Commitment, Connection,” that would be the centerpiece of their marketing.
Our challenge was to take this slogan from the page to the screen. Working with Director of Photography Tim Gordon and the Wizards’ marketing team, we developed storyboards, scripts and a visual style that brought “Character, Commitment, Connection” to life.
Making things more challenging, access to the players is always very limited. In some cases, we had only 15 minutes with certain players to capture all the material we’d need for the entire campaign.
We created a series of “shooting stations” on the court at the Verizon Center and moved the players through them quickly to create a series of looks, from rock star lighting to lasers to pyrotechnics.
The most notable station used the Phantom HD high speed camera, which captures amazing SUPER slow motion footage. This footage, some of it speed ramped, became the signature look of our commercials.
The End Result
From the client to the fans, the campaign was a success – so much so that it won Emmys for Best Commercial and Best Commercial Campaign.