When French advertising agency CLM BBDO needed a gremlin for its new Snickers TV commercial, the obvious solution would have been to go for the CG option.
Instead Artem, an award-winning physical special effects company, was called in and its technicians went to work on creating a sophisticated and lifelike animatronic hand puppet. The gremlin had a moving body, head, arms, hands, eyes, mouth, ears, and brows, and it took three people to operate - Artem even brought in a specialist puppeteer to bring life to the performance.
The result is an authentic recreation of the gremlins in Steven Spielberg's 1984 movie; it might not have the slick movement that you’d expect from a fully CG solution, but it makes a much better job of reflecting the spirit of Spielberg's puppet-packed classic.
Says the commercial's director, Gary Freedman, "Artem nailed the authentic look and the performance was spot on - he was an angry little shit!"
Words: Jim McCauley
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