Create a highly-stylized cinematic campaign filled with action-packed trailers to announce the consecutive seasons of the successful game ‘Apex Legends’.
Mill Co-Directors David Lawson and Lisha Tan set out to create a vivid and unique immersive world. They set the 'Moving Concept Art' look with a huge deck of references and close collaboration with Respawn on their archive gaming concepts and existing universe. The pairing of two directors from different disciplines; Lisha with a background in illustration and design and David with his CG-led perspective, proved key to crafting the distinctive hand-painted aesthetic.
Four bold, iconic and distinctive films that were viewed by millions across the world. Apex Legends Season 3 'Meltdown Launch' received 7.5 million views, Apex Legends Season 2 'Battle Charge' received over 2.4 million views, Apex Legends 'Reveal Trailer' received over 5.4 million views and Apex Legends 'Assimilation Launch' has gained 1.4 million views so far.
Mill Co-Directors David Lawson and Lisha Tan
Direction / Animation / Design / Colour / VFX / Editorial
“The constant communication with Respawn on the dialogue and tone of the script ensured we honored the complex personalities of the game’s characters. We added another layer of authenticity with the opportunity to have a multi-day shoot with performances by Roger Craig Smith and Shantel VanSanten, the actors who bring Mirage and Wraith to life in the game. Every scene was worked through using motion-capture technology including stunt work such as rope work and zip lining. Then, throughout the project, we were constantly iterating and interrogating each shot, to ensure we found the middle ground between the look being too cartoony or too realistic. ”
“It was a privilege to immerse myself in a world that I already found creatively inspiring, to showcase the backstory and personality of these characters for this huge launch. The seamless creative collaboration with an extraordinary team, my background in design and illustration, and David’s award-winning CG experience enabled us to create a new way of telling the complex characters’ stories, whilst honoring the legacy of the Titanfall universe. ”
“Due to the style of the trailer, traditional photographic 2D methods for integration and depth creation had to be approached in a different way. Texture was added to anything that would typically become soft and out of focus to retain the feeling of painted brush strokes. The edges of characters were enhanced and made more visible to give them a cel shaded / cartoon aesthetic.”
“Finding a way to make the iconic characters look painted but not feel flat. We brought them to life through a fine balance of texture, interactive lighting / shading and contouring. ”