Gear head commercial

It's not jeep related but still good to watch.
http://onlinetonight.net/images/hhonda-ad-300k.swf
Six hundred and six takes it took, and if they had
been forced to do a 607th it is probable, if not downright certain, that one of the film crew would have snapped and gone mad.
On the first 605 occasions something small, usually infuriatingly minute, went just slightly awry and the whole delicate arrangement was wrecked.
A drop too much oil there, or here maybe one ball-bearing too many giving a fraction too much impetus to the movement. Whirr, creak, crash, the entire, card-house of consequences was a write-off and they had to start again.
Honda's latest television advertisement, a two-minute film called "Cog", is like a fine-lubricated line of dominoes. It begins with a transmission bearing which rolls into a synchro hub which in turn rolls into a gear wheel cog and plummets off a table on to a camshaft and pulley wheel. All the parts are from the new Honda Accord - 16,495 to you, guv'nor, or 6 million if you want to pay for the advertising campaign. And what an amazing ad campaign it is, too.
Back on Cog, things are still moving, in a what-happened-next manner redolent of "there was an old woman who swallowed a fly". With a ting and a ding of metal on metal, a thud of contact and the occasional thwock, plop and extended scraping sound, the viewer watches as individual, stripped-down parts of car roll into one another and set off more reactions.
Three valve stems roll down a sloped bonnet. An exhaust box is pushed with just enough energy into a rear suspension link which nudges a transmission selector arm which releases the brake pedal loaded with a small rubber brake grommit. Catapult! Boing! On goes the beautiful dance, everything intricately balanced and poised. Nothing must be even a sixteenth of an inch off course or the momentum will be lost.
At one point three tyres, amazingly, roll uphill. They do so because inside they have been weighted with bolts and screws which have been positioned with fingertip care so that the slightest kiss of kinetic energy pushes them over, onward and, yes, upward. During the pre-shoot set-ups, film assistants had to tiptoe round the set so as not to disturb the feather-sensitive superstructure of the arranged metalwork.
The slightest tremor of an ill-judged hand could have undone hours of work.
Utter silence, a check that the lighting is just right, and "action!".
Scores of grown men hold their breath as the cameras roll. An oil can is tipped and glugs just enough of its contents on to a shelf that has been weighted with a Honda flywheel. Some valve springs roll into the oil and are slowed to a pace perfect to make them drop into a cylinder head assembly.
If all these technical names are confusing, that is partly the point.
The advertisement was designed to show motorists all the fiddly little bits of engineering that go into the modern Honda. The result, in this film at least, is something approaching mechanical perfection and a bewitching aesthetic. As car adverts go, it certainly beats the "Nicole! Papa!" school of commercial.
If nothing else, Cog is a welcome departure from the generality of car advertisements that feature winding-road landcapes, empty highways and clear blue skies. The absence of people from the commercial at least saved Honda having to make any regional alterations.
It will be able to be shown everywhere from Japan to South America, Finland to the Maldives, without any more alteration than perhaps a change of the closing voiceover, currently delivered by laid-back Garrison Keillor, the American author, who announces: "Isn't it nice when things just work?"
Cog looks certain to become an advertising legend and part of its allure is the seemingly effortless way the relay of parts slide and touch and roll with such apparent ease. The reality of the film's production was slightly different. It was, by most measures of human patience, a nightmare.
Filming was done over four near-sleepless days in a Paris studio, after one month of script approval, two months of concept drawings and a further four months of development and testing. One of the more surprising things about the ad is that it was not a cheat. Although it would have been much easier to fiddle the chain of events by using computer graphics, the seesaw and shunt of events really did happen, and in one, clean take.
The bigshots at Honda's world headquarters in Japan, when shown Cog for the first time, replied that yes, it was very clever, and how impressive trick photography was these days. When told that it was all real, they were astonished.
One of the more striking moments in the film is when a lone windscreen wiper blade helicopters through the air, suspended from a line of metal twine. "That was the first and last time it worked properly," recalls Tony Davidson, of the London-based advertising agency Wieden & Kennedy. "I wanted it to look like ballet."
After that, a few yards and several ingenious connections down the assembly line, another pair of windscreen wiper blades is squirted by an activated washer jet. Because Honda wipers have automatic sensors that can detect water, they start a crablike crawl across the floor. It is as though they have come to life.
As take 300 led to 400 which led to 500, a certain madness settled on the crew. Rob Steiner, the agency producer, started talking about "our friends, the parts", but in the slightly menacing tone of a primary school teacher discussing her charges at the end of a trying day. Some workers on the film went whole days without sleep and had to be asked to stay away from the more delicate parts of the assembly. Others started to have bad dreams about throttle activator shafts and bonnet release cables.
When things were going wrong - a tyre that kept trundling off to the left, or a rocker shaft that kept toppling over like a tipsy cyclist - the production lads on the shoot would start grumbling that "the parts are being very moody today".
Commercial makers are often accustomed to working with human prima donnas but no Hollywood starlet, no footballing prodigy or showbiz celeb, was ever as troublesome and unpredictable as the con rods and pulley wheels and solenoids that Davidson, Steiner and Co had to work with.
Towards the end of the production, Olivier Coulhon, the first assistant director, had spent so many hours in the darkened studio that his skin had turned a luminous green and his eyes had sunk deep into his Gallic cheeks.
Antoine Bardou-Jacquet, the commercial's director, kept puffing out his cheeks and whinneying, a note of deranged despair twitching at the corners of his mouth. Asked how long he had been working on the commercial, he gave a high-pitched giggle and replied: "Five years? Or is it eight?"
It felt that long.
Two hand-made pre-production Accords - there were only six in existence in the entire world - were needed for the exercise, one of them being ripped apart and cannibalised to the considerable distress of Honda engineers. By the end of the months-long production, the film had used so many spare parts that two articulated lorries were required to take them away.
The idea for the advert derived partly from the old children's game Mouse Trap, and from the wacky engineering of Caractacus Potts's breakfast-making machine in the Sixties film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.
The corporate suits at Honda liked the idea immediately, despite the high costs of production and the fact that it was more than twice as long, and therefore twice as pricey, as normal car ads.
The two-minute version of the ad ran for the first time last Sunday during the Brazilian Grand Prix, and brought pubgoers across the nation to a wide-eyed speechlessness after the Manchester United v Real Madrid game on Tuesday night.
"It was a painstaking process, a tough experience," says Honda's communications manager Matt Coombe, recalling the making of Cog. Some of the original ideas, such as one stunt involving an airbag, had to be dropped owing to a shortage of new Accord parts or simply because they were too hard to set up. And on some takes the process would go perfectly until agonisingly close to the end.
"It was like watching a brilliant footballer weaving his way the whole way through a defending team's players, and then shooting wide right at the end," says Tony Davidson.
The crew resorted to placing bets on which part of the sequence would go wrong. Invariably it was the windscreen wipers.
When the final, 606th take eventually succeeded, there was a stunned silence around the Paris studio.
Then, like shipwrecked mariners finally realising that their ordeal was at an end, the team broke into a careworn chorus of increasingly defiant cheers and hurrahs.
Champagne bottles popped. The cylinder liner had brushed its nose affectionately against the rocker shaft and the gear wheel cog for the last time. The interior grab handles and the suspension spring coils had done their bit. A classic was complete. Cog was in the can.
Mike 98 TJ SE
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You're gullible. It became total Bull Shit animation when we are expected to believe the second tire went from a dead stop up hill to move the next. It's worse the a Libby commercial. God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
GzrGlide wrote:

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Nope lots of write ups and you can go to the producers website and get a video of them making it. Impossible to believe but its really all taped that way, no animation. The producers of this video have done a few things like this.
Tom
http://www.billhughes.com /

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The video, really (no kidding) did happen as we have seen it. It was done by two filmmakers who have done similar long-take kinematic stuff like that before. The tires were weighted to do what they did. Here's a quick article on the two film makers... http://www.frif.com/cat97/t-z/the_way_.html
Here's a little more info on the ad as well... http://home.comcast.net/~bernhard36/honda-ad.html and http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/archives/002599.html
There's a lot of 'stuff' on the Internet that discusses the add and how it was shot. Just do a Google or Yahoo search with Honda, ad, CNN.
Jerry
--
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Jerry Bransford
KC6TAY, PP-ASEL
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I only responded because of the earlier kneejerk and thoughtless "bullshit" response... :)
Jerry -- Jerry Bransford KC6TAY, PP-ASEL The Zen Hotdog, make me one with everything! See the Geezer Jeep at http://members.cox.net/jerrypb /
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writes:

Consider the source... * * * Matt Macchiarolo www.townpeddler.com www.wolverine4wd.org http://wolverine4wd.org/rigs/macchiarolo_ml.html
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Just like your tires are weighted out of balance? I think that's cheating just like the whole skit. What did it prove, that they can sucker another American? Well F**K Japan, and the crap they try to pond off on us! And the traders whom buy them! God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
Matt Macchiarolo wrote:

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No, my tires aren't weighted with engine parts.
What did it prove, that they can

Geez, Bill, pull out your wedgie. It was an advertisement, not meant to prove anything. Just interesting how they made it.
Well F**K Japan, and the crap they try to pond

Interestingly enough, my wife's Odyessey (her lemon-law deposition is next month) was built in the USA (Alabama or North Carolina or somewhere) and contains a larger percentage of USA-made parts than my Ford Superduty.
* * * Matt Macchiarolo www.townpeddler.com www.wolverine4wd.org http://wolverine4wd.org/rigs/macchiarolo_ml.html
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Just like your tires are weighted out of balance? I think that's cheating just like the whole skit. What did it prove, that they can sucker another American? Well F**K Japan, and the crap they try to pawn off on us! And the traitors whom buy them! God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
Matt Macchiarolo wrote:

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Yup, the Democrats made a bundle selling military secrets to and setting China as most favored nation status to allow this New World Order, free trade. The Americans that could compete were forced out of business by the bleeding heart liberals that enforce pollution laws only on this side of the border. God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
GzrGlide wrote:

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Interestingly enough, Bush Sr's administration was in power after the Tienamen (sp?) Square crackdown, when China's trade status was renewed. * * * Matt Macchiarolo www.townpeddler.com www.wolverine4wd.org http://wolverine4wd.org/rigs/macchiarolo_ml.html
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Yup, many of the protesters were rounded up and executed on the spot, and still continued China's most favored trade status. But we didn't hear of the amount of money that changed hands as what went on under Clinton's watch. God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
Matt Macchiarolo wrote:

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Hiya, Bill...
It's obvious to me at this juncture that rather than read the write-up, which clearly explained how the apparent anomaly was achieved, you jumped to a most cynical conclusion. You are intelligent enough to know that a small amount of ingenuity can go a long way. How many times have you 'Macguyvered' something when the parts just weren't available? Anyway, I hope you won't take it as a personal attack....I just want to point out that sometimes things are what they appear to be. Even when we can't see the whole picture.
:-)
Jo
http://www.billhughes.com /

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Hi Jo, Thanks for your opinion. And none of these reposes to me do I take as a person attack. I just can't help, but point out major errors in other peoples logic. God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
Jo wrote:

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That's OK, Bill. Everyone else enjoys pointing out the errors in *your* logic, too. (Just because you're paranoid, doesn't mean we're *not* out to get you...) Have a nice day. ;) TJim
http://www.billhughes.com /

jumped to

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that
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And I welcome my errors pointed out, that's how we learn. God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
TJim wrote:

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writes:

ROFLMAO! * * * Matt Macchiarolo www.townpeddler.com www.wolverine4wd.org http://wolverine4wd.org/rigs/macchiarolo_ml.html
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Matt, obviously you can't figure it out. I've already proved it can't be done to my satisfaction. My stock Thunderbird stereo has eight speakers, two in the dash, one each in the doors, one each rear side panels, and two in the rear deck. I suppose if I didn't have a drive line I could stick another eight in the floor, or flat speakers in the headliner. In your opinion a car dips when not being forced to a stop????? God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
Matt Macchiarolo wrote:

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I'm sure the directors of the ad will make note of that..."Bill Hughes doesn't believe it? How will we ever sleep at night?"

That's a pretty close comparison, a 80's Tbird to a new Accord that isn't even in production yet. What was I thinking.

A car dips under deceleration, whether by brakes or by loss of forward momentum. Take your foot off the gas and see if your car dips. Your CJ doesn't count since your springs don't flex.
Geez, gettin your undies in a bunch over an ad... * * * Matt Macchiarolo www.townpeddler.com www.wolverine4wd.org http://wolverine4wd.org/rigs/macchiarolo_ml.html
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Hi Matt, Of course the Japanese don't give a sh*t what an American thinks of their false advertising. Deceleration, like engine braking yes, but you shouldn't see a dipping coasting to a stop. Of course being a Japanese product the bearing could be binding unevenly. Yes, I do get upset when I see wrong, do you like being lied to? God Bless America, ill O|||||||O mailto: snipped-for-privacy@aol.com http://www.billhughes.com /
Matt Macchiarolo wrote:

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