Microsoft’s holiday film demonstrates the importance of inclusion no matter what our differences are; reminding us that everyone is special, which is a powerful message for the holiday season.The minute-long spot follows a young woman and her doll as they dive into a poster of outer space. In this world, they gather lonely new friends and bring them all together to throw a party, demonstrating Microsoft’s goal of creating a kinder, more inclusive world.
The film is a celebration of inclusion and community. To achieve this, VFX artists designed and built a CGI world full of characters inspired by 3D-Paint; staying true to the platform’s capabilities.
The animation challenge was to convey the full narrative non-verbally. We had to ensure silhouettes clearly communicated each character’s emotional story. Poses needed to be broad and unobstructed to make each quick segment register. Careful blocking guaranteed the strongest emotional weight. For example, the compressed sitting pose of the pink alien vs. the spread out pose signal very different emotions.
Additionally, characters facial expression guided the story. An example of this is the Yeti's face: it needed to convey the surprise of coming to life. His mouth and eyebrow were animated, while adhering to the traditional animation principals of maintaining volume and mass, to grow in size and shape to make a quick read of emotion even when his action is subtle.
VFX crew Animatiors
3D Supervisor - Chris Bernier
2D Lead - Tobey Lindback
Editors - Ethan Simmons, Catherine Gionfriddo
Concept Designer/Storyboard Artist - Tyler Gibb
2D Team - Jeric Pimentel, Giulia Bartra, David Anger, Renato Carone, Chris Miller, Jason Cutler, Adam Yost, Alejandro Taylor, Elsa Tu, Tim Crean
3D Team - Graeme Revell, Tiago Dias, Chris Ribar, Roberto Maki, Vadim Turchin, Jacob Fradkin, Francisco Fraga, Mike Lombardo, Wesley Schneider, Jemmy Molero, Ash Yee, Monica Manalo, Anthony Gordon, Sue Jang, Zhao Wang, David Avetisov, Ramiro Gomez, Robert Dollase, Anna White, Darren Chang, Josh Delaney, Paul Wei, Chris Mayne, Ian Wilmoth, Lee Wolland, Carly Senora, Tom Cushwa, Kintan Chau