Movie Prop Rentals has all the Mother Nature you need to impress audiences. We know how to suspend audience disbelief and make a studio set appear as though the footage is shot out in the real world. Yet, ultimately, you can expect your commercial to be done in a shorter amount of time, under budget. In 2012, AT&T contacted us to help create special effects, a bay, and a city in the distance.

About the Ad

This subtle AT&T ad titled “Warming Up” features 12-time Olympic medalist, Ryan Lochte, doing what he does best. We worked with BBDO New York, Smuggler production company, and Director of Photography Trent Opalach (a.k.a. “Psyop”). During the spot, the American swimmer passes by fish and manta rays, through all the elements of a typical hurricane, to arrive in London through his hard work and perseverance.

What We Did

We created all the special effects you see in the ad, including fake clouds, lightning, rain, and windy hurricanes. Everything you see here is our illusion – the city of London, the bay Ryan’s swimming in, even the light from the sun and moon on the water has been faked. The sea life was added by our partners in post-production, but we could have certainly created realistic-looking puppets if we had to!

Insider’s Perspective

“Though it looks authentic, it would be impossible to get a stunning, clear glimpse of Ryan swimming in a real bay, let alone during hurricane conditions,” said Art Director Graylan Franklin. “We had to fabricate everything. The lighting was really our focus to create a brightened mood of overcoming adversity and hopefulness prior to the Olympics. The response from the ad was overwhelmingly positive. It really did get people back home fired up for the Games. They loved it.”

“Movie Prop Rentals built seven long swim lanes that we turned into a bay,” explained Production Designer Jerry Blohm. “We had to film the ending just right, so that the sun was in the right place over the buildings when Ryan Lochte got there. Of all the effects, I agree with Graylan that the lighting was probably the most challenging part of the shoot.”

When Your Set Design Requires State-of-the-Art Special Effects, Call Movie Prop Rentals!

Movie Prop Rentals has the in-house equipment, personnel, and experience necessary to pull off special effects. We’ve done fire, fog, bubbles, waves, scorching sun, wind – you name it! We’ve even filled entire cities with foam. No job is too big or too small. You can count on our agile team of “can-do” professionals to complete every step of your production from set design and storyboarding, through execution and cleanup, OR you can call upon us for a very specialized aspect of your production. We play well with others! Wherever in the world you need us, we’ll be there. Contact us for a free, no-obligation, customized quote.