MailChimp, The Black Hole



MPC Helps Director Greg Barth and Droga5 Face ‘The Black Hole’ for MailChimp

A hapless business owner named Steve is confronted by the gaping black hole of too much data, too much knowledge, too many client emails to reply to and too many details to keep track of. This big black hole appears behind him, set against a grid that seems to gently pulsate, causing the hole to change slightly in shape. It’s the centerpiece of a new campaign Droga5 for the business automation service MailChimp. Directed by the designer-turned-director Greg Barth and produced by Ruffian, the gently comic spots feature visual effects elements provided by the artists at MPC New York.

This is the second MailChimp campaign in which MPC has partnered with Droga5 to bring offbeat concepts to life. Previously, the studio lent its visual effects capabilities to such arresting ads as “MailShrimp,” “KaleLimp” and “JailBlimp.” These surreal ads relied heavily on VFX in order to bring their highly visual concepts to life.

In this latest campaign, which consists of four spots under the heading “MailChimp vs The Black Hole,” the black hole represents a business owner’s sources of anxiety, and MailChimp’s products appear as solutions. These are illustrated with a series of soothing graphs or charts rendered in shades of light green and orange.

The MPC team was tasked with “helping to make these light animations that are beautiful and artful while striking a balance between being emotive and explanatory,” says MPC’s Head of 2D, Marcus Wood. “We had to translate the power of each MailChimp feature into these visual forms in a way that illustrated the emotional dynamics that result from applying them to your business problems.”

In addition to creating the animated charts and graphs, MPC also augmented the practical in-camera effects that Barth used to create the gently pulsating black hole itself. The director, whose fine art and design work has been exhibited in galleries and museums around the world, is known for his use of fabrics and physical manipulation in his film and video work. He used similar techniques, with an assist from MPC, on this MailChimp campaign. The studio’s artists and producers collaborated closely with the director and creative team at Droga5 from the initial brief through on-set shoot supervision and final delivery.

Credits

Agency

Droga5

Director

Greg Barth

Client

MailChimp

Production Company

Ruffian

Production Company

Second Child

DOP, Ruffian

Andrij Parekh

Executive Producer, Ruffian

David Richards

Producer, Ruffian

Erin Wile

Agency Creative Chairman

David Droga

Chief Creative Officer

Ted Royer

Associate Director of Film Production

Ruben Mercadal

Agency Executive Creative Director

Neil Heymann

Group Creative Director

Don Shelford

Senior Copywriter

Julie Matheny

Design Director

Devin Croda

Senior Designer

Nate Moore

Junior UX Designer

James Garvey

Chief Creation Officer

Sally-Ann Dale

Co-Directors of Film Production

Jesse Brihn & Bryan Litman

Associate Producers, Film

Sasha Pace & Isabella Lebovitz

Business Affairs Manager

Denise Klapp

Director of Interactive Production

Niklas Lindstorm

Associate Director of Interactive Production

Justin Durazzo

Senior Producer, Interactive Media

Madison Goldberg

Producer, Interactive

Grace Wang

Director of Art Production

Cliff Lewis

Director of Print Services

Rob Lugo

Retoucher

Cayla Zahoran

Graphics Studio Managers

Michelle Leedy & Virginia Vargas

Production Artist

Emmanuel Perez

Quality Control Specialist

Susanne Johansson

Global Chief Strategy Officer

Jonny Bauer

Co-Head of Strategy

Colm Murphy

Strategy Director

Katie Coane

Head of Communications Strategy

Colleen Leddy

Communications Strategy Director

Taylor Hines

Chief Intelligence Officer

Amy Avery

Data Strategist

Kaveri Gautam

Executive Group Director

Julian Cheevers

Account Director

Pat Rowley

Account Supervisor

Josh Freeland

Account Manager

Camille Cheeks-Lomax

Performance Group Director

Paul Eckelmann

Project Manager

Rayna Lucier

Counsel

Sarah Fox

Associate Counsel

Zachary Werner

Editorial

Wax

Editor

Paul Watts

Executive Producer

Toni Lipari

Producer

Annabelle Cuthbert

VFX

MPC

Executive Producer

Camila De Biaggi

Senior Producer

Elissa Norman

VFX Supervisor

Marcus Wood

2D Team

Warren Paleos, Giulia Bartra, Rob Walker, Matt Tremaglio, Bilali Mack

Color Executive Producers

Ellora Chowdhury & Dani Zeitlin

Colorist

Richard Fearon & Adrian Seery

Roto

Srikanth Salla, Karthi G, Mahendra Reddy, Amit Shukla, Manu PS, Kishan Katrimal, Muruganatham T, Joslin Job Mathew, Hemalatha T, Kiran Veeraswarapu