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Gas Powered Everything


In TBWA/Chiat/Day’s new Nissan Leaf commercial, gas-powered cars seem poised to go the route of gangly wire-strewn computers and football-sized mobile phones. ‘Gas Powered Everything’ illuminates the antiquated and sooty nature of gas-powered cars vs. the contemporary and green nature of electric. Directed by Dante Ariola and with VFX from The Mill L.A., the spot is a day in the life of our protagonist not quite enjoying life’s modern conveniences … except when it comes to his Nissan Leaf electric car.

"Everything we use in our lives is battery powered, so why not have that apply to our cars?" says Trent Shumway, our Lead Flame Artist/VFX Supervisor on 'Gas Powered Everything'. "That was the idea the agency wanted to convey. We added a layer of grime to the gadgets and were going for a feeling of drudgery like something George Orwell might write."

The Mill team worked with Ariola and kept as much as possible in camera; for instance the smoke was shot on black then used primarily in the office scene. For the wide shot in the office, more props of the computer were created in CG. There were beauty enhancements and augmentation of other things throughout the spot. And to convey the notion that the spot's backdrop could be any city in the U.S., Shumway and his team removed palm trees from the gas station exterior shot.

"It was a great collaboration with the agency team and a pleasure to work with Dante," Shumway says. "It was particularly fun to watch him shoot the scene in the dentist office where the oversized drill was used on our character in the dentist's chair. There was a fair amount of squirming that went on for that one," he laughs, "but in the end it all turned out just fine."



  • Agency: TBWA/Chiat/Day
  • Producer: Carrie Schaer
  • Creative Director: Tito Melega
  • Creatives: Glenn Sanders, Dylan Schwartz, Dylan Meagher
  • Account Director: Alex Haglund


  • Production Company: MJZ
  • Director: Dante Ariola
  • Executive Producer: Jeff Scruton, David Zander
  • Producer: Natalie Hill
  • Director of Photography: Matthew Libatique
  • Production Designer: Christopher Glass


  • Editing Company: Mackenzie Cutler
  • Editor: Gavin Cutler
  • Edit Assist: Ryan Steele

Post-Production / VFX

  • Post-Production / VFX Company: The Mill
  • Executive Producer: Sue Troyan
  • VFX Producer: Asher Edwards
  • Shoot Supervisor: Trent Shumway, Asher Edwards
  • 2D Lead Artists: Trent Shumway
  • 2D Artists: Tim Bird, Sarah Eim, Narbeh Mardirossian
  • 3D Artists: Yorie Kumalasari
  • Assist: Shane Zinkhon, Steve Cokonis, Gavin Camp, Gareth Parr, Andy Bate, Nick Taylor
  • Motion Graphics: Tom O’Neill

project information


Dante Ariola



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