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A large team at The Mill NY left no frame untouched for Fake, the 60-second US TV spot made to promote Barclays as a bank of substance in an insubstantial world.

'As always, the director Nicolai Fuglsig delivered fantastic material for The Mill NY to work with,' says lead Flame Dan Williams. 'The spot is loaded with visual gags. It's great to work on pieces where the effects are so integral to the narrative.'

Nicolai brought his keen eye to the filming of a New York city disturbingly peopled not by living beings but by inanimate mannequins. The last man standing, a young besuited businessman panics as his apparently solid surroundings reveal themselves to be fake. Steps crumble, an imposing classical building is nothing but a painted backdrop; unaccountably his world has become a film set. But normality is finally restored by a reassuringly real Barclays banker asking, 'Can I help you?'

Dan says he and Angus Kneale, Creative Director at The Mill NY, 'worked hard to give the spot a consistent look, but perhaps the stand-out scene is the wide shot of the backdrop falling to reveal a desolate back-lot. It's a great example of cloth simulation by the 3D team. A lot of care was taken to give the massive drape the correct weight and gravity so it had the proper sense of scale and fell correctly.'



  • Agency: Venables Bell & Partners
  • Producer: Craig Allen
  • Creative Director: Paul Venables, Greg Bell, Tom Scharpf
  • Creatives: Tom Scharpf


  • Production Company: MJZ
  • Director: Nicolai Fuglsig
  • Producer: Emma Wilcockson
  • Director of Photography: Ellen Kuras


  • Editing Company: Final Cut LA
  • Editor: Rick Russell

Post-Production / VFX

  • Post-Production / VFX Company: The Mill
  • VFX Producer: Bethan Thomas
  • Shoot Supervisor: Ben Smith
  • 2D Lead Artists: Dan Williams, Naomi Anderlini
  • 2D Artists: Iwan Zwarts, Corey Brown, Gigi Ng
  • 3D Artists: Mike Dunkley, Wyatt Savarese, Alek Vacura, Tom Bardwell, Naotaka Minami
  • Colourist: Fergus McCall
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11-14 Windmill Street,
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Tel: +44 20 7287 4041

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451 Broadway, 4th/5th/6th Floor,
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