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Write The Future


Nike has kicked off its new football campaign in style with ‘Write the Future’ – an epic feature length three minute ad featuring a star turn from Wayne Rooney. Continuing our unique relationship with Nike, we have collaborated with our old friends at Wieden+Kennedy, Amsterdam and director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu on a remarkable script that required us to pull out all of the stops. They don’t come much bigger or better than this...

'Write the Future' features an almighty line up of football superstars including Rooney, Ronaldo, Drogba, Ronaldinho, Ribery, Walcott, Fabregas and Cannavaro.  The ad shows how the slightest margin of error can lead to ultimate glory or utter dejection, as is the case when Rooney misses a crucial pass and is sent into a physical decline that sees him ending up washed up, bearded, overweight and living in a caravan.  The blockbuster commercial's other highlights include a giant statue of Ronaldo and cameos from Homer Simpson, actor Gael Garcia Bernal and Kobe Bryant.  

In one of our biggest jobs to date, the visual effects team worked on a staggering 236 VFX shots made up of 106 football shots which included a CG stadium complete with flags and banners, crowd replication using Massive, grass clean up and replacement, and full rotoscope of all the players.  The other 84 effects shots included joining up Rooney and Roger Federer's ping pong match, creating film premiere posters and inserting a matte painting of an industrial background to the scene featuring Rooney as a groundsman.  Our team also built the YouTube and Facebook sequences from various elements as well as creating a fully CG satellite and Earth matte painting.  Finally there was the enormous CG stadium build and matte painting work for the futuristic and fantasy Christiano Ronaldo Stadium.  

Our work did not stop there.  Once the ad was completed, Beam delivered 14 worldwide global adapts - which were done centrally at The Mill - directly to international broadcasters, as well as delivering bespoke material for localised reversioning to 6 countries and generic HD and SD digital assets to 31 other countries.

Stephen Venning, Executive Producer of the spot, said:   "This is one of the biggest commercial VFX projects The Mill has ever undertaken and in such a short time frame of just five weeks.  I can confidently say that there is no other company in the world who could have achieved this level of creativity and believability, and this is quite simply due to the dedication and skill of our talented team of visual effects artists."



  • Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Amsterdam
  • Producer: Elissa Singstock, Olivier Klonhammer
  • Creatives: Mark Bernath, Eric Quennoy, Stuart Harkness, Freddie Powell


  • Production Company: Anonymous, Independent
  • Director: Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu
  • Director of Photography: Emmanuel Lubezki aka Chivo


  • Editing Company: Work
  • Editor: Rich Orrick, Ben Jordan

Post-Production / VFX

  • Post-Production / VFX Company: The Mill
  • Executive Producer: Stephen Venning
  • VFX Producer: Matt Williams, Dan Roberts, Boo Wong, Allison Cain, Cath Short (Colour)
  • Shoot Supervisor: Neil Davies, Tom Bussell, Austen Humphries, Vince Baertsoen, Des Anwar, Darren Christie
  • 2D Lead Artists: Neil Davies, Westley Sarokin
  • 3D Lead Artists: Tom Bussell, Ben Smith
  • 2D Artists: Rich Roberts, Grant Connor, Pete Rypstra, Leon Woods, Danny Morris, Darren Christie, Vanessa duQuesnay, Donal Nolan, John Price, Corey Brown, Suzanne Dyer, Rosalind Paradis, Iwan Zwarts, Jade Kim, Gigi Ng, Robert Bruce, Randy Krueger, Brendan O'Neil, Albert Cook, Alex Lovejoy, Melissa Graff, Tristan Wake, Jeff Robins, Keith Sullivan, Claudia D'Enjoy
  • 3D Artists: Juan Brockhaus, Edward Hicks, Dan Adams, Daniel Jahnel, Amy Macdonald, Sergio Xisto, Eva Kuehlmann, Ed Shires, Nikki Atkinson, Adrian Russell, Sean Whelan, Wyatt Savarese, Sebastian Wernicke, Chris Bernier, Ajit Menon, Hassan Taimur (Crowd Effects/Massive)
  • Assist: Matthew Salisbury, James Lakin, Ben Thomas, Anton Smit, Joe Dennis, Sean Whelan, Eliot Speed, Amy Cuthbertson, Tom Bolt, Chris Cooper, Ben Brown, Paul Downes, John Price, Ben Turner, Zoe Cassey Hayes, Dawn Bowery, Jeanette Williford, Kirti Dave, Mervyn New, Laura Jacobs, Mark Titchener, Laraib Atta
  • Matte Painting: Dave Gibbons , Can Y. Sanalan
  • Colourist: Seamus O’Kane, James Bamford, Aubrey Woodiwiss
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