Mistress & Ubisoft Make History with Intense New AC Unity Trailer
For its highly anticipated upcoming video game release Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed Unity today releases “Make History,” a cinematic commercial created by the multi-disciplinary creative agency Mistress in collaboration with Ubisoft and Digital Domain. The French Revolution is the setting of the game which follows the master assassin Arno Victor Dorian on a deadly path of redemption during the brutal French Revolution. “Make History” seamlessly integrates the Assassin’s Creed Unity backdrop around Notre Dame and the Paris skyline with original scenes, live-action characters, and CG doubles. The spot features a new Assassin’s Creed campaign tagline “Make History.”
Available November 11 for next-gen consoles and Windows PC, Assassin’s Creed Unity for the first time introduces a cooperative multiplayer, enabling up to four gamers to play the historical action-adventure video game together.
“Once again, it was a pleasure to collaborate with Ubisoft on Assassin’s Creed,” said Scott Harris, Partner/Creative Director, Mistress. “We worked together to create a cinematic and rich teaser for Unity that maintains the historical context of Paris at the time of the French Revolution. ‘Make History’ also introduces another layer of intrigue with an intense in-game story around four players who come together using Unity’s new cooperative multiplayer feature.”
“Make History” was shot over two days with four units at a Los Angeles sound stage. Mistress creatives worked closely with Digital Domain/Mothership director Neil Huxley (Avatar), Digital Domain VFX Supervisor Janelle Croshaw (Her) and cinematographer Ross Emery (The Wolverine) to incorporate some of the finer details of Assassin’s Creed Unity into the trailer’s 45 second storyline: for example, mesmerizing parkour moves down buildings; Arno’s signature phantom blade weapon and iconic Leap of Faith move; and cooperative play of four gamers using different weapons and moves to influence the dynamic of the action. Croshaw worked with a commercial artist team using a feature film pipeline to render the spot’s movie-like environment, over a five-week postproduction schedule.
The trailer’s culminating fight scene depicts Arno, his Brotherhood of the Assassin’s brethren and four gamers descending upon Robespierre as executioner on a life-size guillotine built by Digital Domain. A Mistress sketch was the template for the scene. Rembrandt-like lighting of the cityscape was created based on Croshaw’s own HDR reference photos of Notre Dame and Emery’s lighting on green screen. And Huxley created the realistic movement of the gamers in their chairs by shooting plates against green screen of the chairs at right angles, and deploying stunt men in green suits—“green ninjas”—who lifted the actors in the chairs and moved them realistically.
“We loved working with Mistress because they had a distinct vision of what the spot should be, they stuck to it and Ubisoft trusted that instinct,” Huxley said. “Using everything from the performances of the gamers which were edgy and fun to every weapon at our disposal from our VFX pipeline, helped us arrive at a very stylized cinematic spot we’re all very proud of.”
Brand: Assassin's Creed
Animation Company: Digital Domain, 3.0
Animation Supervisor: Benjamin Cinelli
Director: Steve Preeg
Executive Producer: Scott Gemmell
Creative Agency: Mistress
Associate Creative Directors: Ben Beale, Rory Forrest
Creative Director: Scott Harris
Producer: Kay Lynn Dutcher
Digital Production Company
Digital Production: Brian Creasey, Gideon Vandegrift, David Liu, Daisuke Nagae
Post Production / VFX
CG: William "Lee" Carlton
Matte Painting: Jonathan Green
Senior Producer: Carla Attanasio
VFX Supervisor: Janelle Croshaw
Director: Neil Huxley
Executive Producer: Scott Gemmell
Managing Director: Rich Flier
Producer: Justin Si Diener
Production Company: Mothership Media, Inc.
Category: Gaming , Sports and leisure