Stardust Directs Cinematic Journey for the Ford 2011 Mustang

Category: Web Exclusives
Santa Monica, Calif., - Bi-coastal creative production studio Stardust was tapped by ad agency Team Detroit to launch the new Ford 2011 Mustang with a cinematic spot for TV and cinema. Stardust's Jake Banks directed the live-action commercial, titled "_PG." The spot highlights the 2011 Mustang's speed, bold lines and fuel efficiency through seductive camera work, motion type and an authentic aesthetic. The 30 second version aired Wed., April 28th during American Idol on FOX, while the 60 second premiered in cinemas on April 30th.


Banks and his team at Stardust were chosen to produce "_PG" because their ability to shoot, edit, animate, and rock the visual effects gave them the upper hand over the competition.



Set to the soulful rock Band of Skulls track "Light of the Morning," the spot follows the 2011 Mustang through one of its habitats, the urban jungle. Shots of the car captured in motion, from rooftops and even as a reflection in a Chinese restaurant window, are interchanged with views of the city environment. CG type accented by gleaming light effects reinforces the Mustang's "31 MPG" and its "Primal" and "Untamed" qualities. Close-up shots of the car's interior reveal the Mustang's customization options, such as the available Navigation System. The spot continues to play with light. Reflections off skyscraper facades, flashes from the Mustang’s grill and hubcaps, and the blinding sun as the car exits a tunnel give the commercial a lazy Sunday feel and compliment the spot's earthy color palette.

Banks spent four days in March filming in various parts of San Francisco, a location chosen for its ability to embody the urban vibe of any city. The picture car shoot involved three 35mm ARRI cameras operating simultaneously. These were attached to a Russian Arm on a pursuit vehicle, on a motorcycle chase car, with a wide-lens camera planted on rooftops to capture the footage below. A Stardust team of 15 worked on the spot over the course of a month and a half, with a lot of time spent in pre-production and upfront during the concept phase.

To give the typography a unique look, Banks opted for an old fashioned type shoot, capturing natural light effects using multiple lenses on 35mm film and then warping and deforming the effects along with digital type in the 3D package Autodesk Maya. "_PG" was finished on the 2011 Autodesk Flame.


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