Project:

Dairy Farmers of Canada

'Mia & Morton'

Type:

Animation

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.al.

Credits

  • 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

The Family

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.

The 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.

BTS

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.

Collaborators by Design