The First Digital Nation
For the nation of Tuvalu’s speech at COP27 about the devastating future facing the country’s battle with rising sea levels, we were challenged with recreating Teafualiku Islet to a high level of photorealism to serve as the background for an unbroken three and a half minute shot (or 5237 frames). Initially the camera focuses on the Foreign Minister, before the natural world begins to glitch and shatter the illusion, pulling back to reveal he’s in fact speaking from a digital artifice that’s slowly constructing around him.
To achieve this, we first began by utilising drone photography of the actual islet that would provide the rough dimensions, information for its recreation. We spent a number of weeks modelling the base island, texturing and procedurally detailing the island with rocks, plants, and debris. As well, we simulated twenty unique palms, along with digital flags, that would provide subtle and naturalistic movement behind the minister.
The transition between the fractured islet and the dark void was achieved using animated maps, synced to the virtual camera. The final piece of the puzzle was the Minister himself: filmed outside in natural light, he was projected onto 3D geometry to allow for subtle parallax and all being brought together with the 3D renders in compositing, with subtle atmospheric elements and optical artefacts to tie the illusion together.
Glenn Stewart- Director
Glenn Stewart - 3D Animation
Hugh Carrick-Allan - Technical Director/ VFX Supervisor
Joseph Harper - Additional Vfx
Matt Fezz - Colourist
The Monkeys, part of Accenture SongMark Green - Group CEO and Co-FounderScott Nowell - Group Chief Creative Officer and Co-Founder
Kezia Quinn - General Manager
Tara Ford - Chief Creative Officer
Beth O'Brien - Head of Innovation
Cameron Bell - Creative Director
Sam Dickson - Creative Director
Alex Polglase - Art DirectorJake Ausburn - Copywriter
Penny Brown - Head of Production
Tamera Wohl - Digital Producer
Eva Godeny - Digital Design Lead
Hugh Munro - Head of Planning
Lucy Sundberg - GTM & Strategy Director, Sustainability Studio
Collider Rachael Ford-Davies - Managing Director
Karen Bryson - EP/Producer