Heineken, The Trailblazers

Watch the making-of below

MPC, Matthijs van Heijningen and Publicis Italy deliver the ultimate boys’ night, in Heineken’s epic new film

With six worlds in one commercial, the scale of CG and VFX craft in one commercial is immense, and the result highlights a true creative partnership. Transporting four ordinary blokes at the beginning of a night out in New York to the world’s most extreme environments – from the summit of Mount Everest to outer Space – the film delivers explosions, atmosphere, and flying debris on an extraordinary level, along with Hollywood-inspired storytelling. 

Making of:


Film craft

Creating so many different ‘worlds’ in one film saw our VFX teams working for more than three months to craft the visual feast – teams across London, Amsterdam and Bangalore worked collaboratively to pull it off. Just some of the tasks involved included building two entirely CG ships, which required extensive pre-vis before the shoot itself, a spacecraft - which van Heijningen wanted to shoot up close – and a sequence where the guys scale Mount Everest with a Himalayas backdrop. Not forgetting the impressive feat of creating a 10,000-strong Roman army from a cast of 100 actors!


Carsten Keller, VFX Supervisor (CG) and MPC’s Head of 3D says: ‘It was incredible working with Publicis Italy and Matthijs van Heijningen on this epic commercial. This is a huge piece of work – we’re talking about six films in one, crafted by over 70 artists in over 90 days. The VFX scale speaks for itself, and that sort of creative achievement isn’t possible without true collaboration, but the story remains about the journey these guys go on together. We hope that people watching truly believe that they’re there, in those worlds.’


"The Heineken Trailblazers spot is a feature-film scale project with the level of craft it required", says Dirk Riesenfeld, who led the VFX in our Amsterdam studio - where the entire compositing team for the epic spot is based. "It’s the type of project that every VFX artist wants to work on. Whilst immersing our audience into the extreme worlds - we had to keep reality at the front of people's minds. Working with both the agency and the director was an absolute pleasure creatively and personally. I also feel lucky to have a strong creative team around me in both our Amsterdam studio and MPC teams around the globe."




Publicis Italy


Matthijs van Heijningen

Production Company


Global Chief Creative Officer Publicis WW

Bruno Bertelli

Executive Creative Director, Publicis Italy

Cristiana Boccassini

Executive Creative Directors, Publicis Milan

Luca Cinquepalmi, Marco Venturelli


Beatrice Mari

Art Director

Simone Di Laus


Alice Crovato

Executive Producer, MJZ

Helen Kenny

Producer, MJZ

Donald Taylor

Production Designer

Pirra Lorenzo


Chayse Irvin

Edit Company

Work Editorial


Jono Griffith



VFX Supervisor (CG)

Carsten Keller

VFX Supervisor (CG Ships)

Andreu Lucio Archs

VFX Supervisor (2D)

Dirk Riesenfeld

VFX Producer

Philip Whalley

CG Line Producer

Sandra Eklund

Line Producer

Deepanjali Singh

Production Assistant

Joanna Barcikowska




Jean-Clément Soret

VFX team

Giles Hicks, Mikael Petterson, Ruairi Twohig, George Brunt, Denis Krez, Rajesh Kaushik, Silambarasan R P, Avinash Bhandary, Rashabh Bhutani, Rajkumar C., Paul Wilmot, Kalle Kohlström, Alex Snookes, Steve Oakley, ArttuKoskela, Prashanth Paramasivam,Gayatri Patel, Christian Bohm, Jessie Amadio, Alessandro Granella, Graeme Turnball, Stephan Haidacher, David Bryan, Boris Cailly, Anthony Bloor, DMP lead: Lino Khay, Neil Miller, Bakiyaraj P, Gowri Shankar Velusamy D, Ambalika Nandy, Craig Savio Padua, Deepali Negi, Elangovan Ganeshan, Manoj Ravi, Sindhuja B, Ganesh Kumar S., Jacob T. Oommen, Jyoti Prakash Panda, Sourodeep Dey, Abhinandan Madhu, Kunal Sarkar, Anbarasu E, Manjunath Ramakrishnaiah, Sumesh Chammancheri, Vaibhav Gupta, Raju Ganesh S., Baskaran S, Ria Banerjee, SelvaKumar k, Inigo Vimal Roy, Hemalatha T, Jaswan Vishnu Prasath, Joslin Job Mathew, Kiran Veeraswarapu, Kishan Katrimal, Likin Ganpathy CP, Maheswar Konda, Mohanakrishnan C, Naresh, Padma Priya, Praveenkumar Samiraj, R Kumaresan, Rajesh Kumar, Sangeetha M, Shyam Babu, Sreejimol CP, Srikanth Salla, V Jegadeesan, Yasasvini.V, Vishal Digambar Mule, K. Nikkesh, Akhil K.P., Amresh Kumar, Ragesh R, S. Samson Samuel, Jonny Eveson, Rune Mansson


Tito Fernandes