Dairy Farmers of Canada
'Mia & Morton'
From the moment we laid eyes on the script for “Mia & Morton” from our amazing partners at DDB Toronto, we knew this project was special. A stylized dive into the relationship of a father and daughter and how their day-to-day lives reflected the metaphors of the cheesemakers in Canada. With a concept that pushed the idea of creativity first and a dared to be emotional, we instantly could relate.
Our immediate goal was to create a story that was touching, personal and sharable all at the same time. We wanted to touch people in the feels and imbue our own relationships and personalities into the characters. Defining emotion through style is something we proudly preach at GS. From a vector square to a life-like Morton, we are passionate about creating experiences. Add in a wonderful cover of Fleetwood Mac's "Don't Stop Thinking About Tomorrow," by Canadian folk sensation Rose Cousins, and you have yourself a deal.
- Production Company: Gentleman Scholar
Directors: Willam Campbell & Will Johnson
Executive Producer: Jo Arghiris
Head of Production: Rachel Kaminek
Senior Producer: Tyler Locke
Art Director: Paul Kim
CG Supervisor: Tim Hayward
Storyboard: Brian Deloach
Design: Paul Kim, Hana Eunjin Yean
Additional Design: George Fuentes, James Levy
Character Modeling: Hannah Josepher
Modeling: Mike Ko, Robin Kim, Mike Dupree, Paul Kim
Texture: Mike Ko, Michael Rogers, Paul Kim
3D Generalists: Juan Carlos Cuadra, Jacques Clement, Gaby Gorostieta, Ryan Kaplan
Character Animation: James Lane, Kevin Phelps, Evan Mayfield
Rigging: Lee Wolland, Tim Hayward
Hair/Fur: Adnan Hussain
Cloth Simulation: Tim Hayward
Lighting: Hao Cui, Chris Fung, Robin Kim
Compositing: Matt Lavoy, Kevin Njoo
2D Animation: Lauren Tom
- Agency: DDB Canada, Toronto
Chief Creative Officer: Cosmo Campbell
Executive Creative Director: Paul Wallace
Copywriter: Evan Wallis
Art Director: Dean Hamann
Agency Producer: Julia Morris, Tracy Haapamaki
Account Team: Jenni Cowdy (Group Account Director), Heather Moffat (Account Director), Cassia Napier (Account Executive)
Strategist: Brett McDonald (Director or Stretegy)
Lead Designer: Duncan Collis
Tech Director: Justin MacLeod
UX: Jordan Kentris
Developers: Tyson Yau
“Anything is possible. Anything can be.”
― Shel Silverstein
Using our heroes as metaphors worked well, but where the film resonates is in its deep emotional quality. We wanted to feel the narrative story arc in the way our characters care for one another. How we move from Morton’s deep care for Mia and as they age the roles reverse as Morton begins to lose a bit of his step. It’s that moment when you realize that maybe your parents weren’t always perfect but that they did their best. Mia takes over as the rock, the caretaker, and her carefree, youthful energy evolved into a mature, gentle kindness. The aging of the characters and the style of animation reflected the evolution of Canadian cheeses and their place in the modern world.
This was the canvas to the story. The backdrop to where it all takes place. A stylized framework that ebbed and flowed as our heroes evolved. Through textures and lighting, every scene will come to life, adding another layer of personality to every moment. It’s not about recreating the world we live in, it’s about surrounding Mia and Morton with the perfect foundation for their story to grow.
In creating a story like this there are always a million moving pieces that come together at just the right moments to create something amazing. This is a glimpse into how our amazing team helped curate the chaos and formulate a story that we couldn’t be more proud of. And although we tend to think of ourselves as better behind the camera, we sure definitely enjoyed talking about our process for this spot. Be sure to check it out.