2052 Surfers

June 2019 ––
Coolest-ever agency CD Mauricio Alcorn from the most excellent Conquistadors in Brooklyn delivered a script that made Munky’s heart melt, a short film with a conscience for the Ocean52’s 'Hydration for Ocean Lovers' line of drink products. Having spent over 20 years in Northern California, five of those in Humboldt County – illuminated the Lost Coast as one of those places where the love of the ocean runs deep — the kind of paradisiacal untouched coastline of any surfer’s dreams. It was a vision of a world in 2052 that he knew intimately — set in San Francisco, his current home, with characters that he not only recognized, but practically grew up with. Rain or shine, despite the freezing waters, the massive surf, and the precarious trek out to the shore — his comrades would be out on their boards, facing the waves. They are the characters in this piece, the people checking the surf reports, heartbroken by the polluted waters, but undaunted and ready to ride nonetheless.

It was an opportunity to make something that is so much more than a commercial. It was a short film with a conscience, and something so important to say. We were not merely selling a product, we were offering a solution to a very real problem: cleaning up the oceans — so that by 2052 our surfers will still have clean waves to ride.

The Film

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The Approach

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At the core this film is a human story rather than a futuristic story – a down-to-earth vision of what the future will look like, ie a lo-fi approach to sci-fi. Quirky and charming, a compendium not of grand scale, but of the little things that make real life...real life. To that end, we wanted to cast just the right characters, whose authentic performances made us believe that this world is real. We crafted little kernels of science fiction throughout in a charming, almost analog way, taking the audience to someplace familiar, but new — the organic progression of our present — that was more daydream than dystopia. Add to that cinematic visuals and a richly warm and beautiful palette, we sought to create a film that would help audiences empathize with our story and absorb our message. A film that would hopefuly create change.

Each detail was a statement on the future that said something about what life can be, that wraps up our audience in a world that they can’t help but believe in. How the Jeep Wagoneer turned hovercraft moved and stopped, how they used the surf report so effortlessly, what sound the car makes during its approach, how the windshield shed that blue light onto their faces.

This attention to detail pervaded every part of this film — from the likable, charismatic characters, the real nuances of the performance, the complementary warm color palette set on a foggy San Francisco afternoon — so that everything felt simultaneously familiar and unique at the same time.

That’s the part that fascinated Munky the most and what would get the audience to dream and ultimately listen to what we had to say. Because we wanted to craft this world so carefully in its elegant, lovable simplicity, our audience would want to live in it, our audience would want to dive right in and do whatever they could to help.
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The Surf Plastic Report

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I didn’t see the surf report as a super detailed, ultra-futuristic terminal. Instead, we wanted it to be cleaner and concise, a little more minimal and beautiful. It wasn’t about the complexity that made it work, but the presence of it. We felt it more than we saw its every detail. We always saw it as a mostly out of focus element, with the information being a quick read.

That being said, we got the great Nicolas Lopardo to design a very clean, minimalist interface that felt approachable, and more importantly – usable. We broke down the structural UX and came up with a heat zone map and detailed magnification breakdowns decked out in blues with a warm complementary tones. This still allowed us to see the environment through it, while casting a blue light onto our surfers so we understoodd it to be a part of their world – which made it all the more believable.
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In Conclusion

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This film had so much depth in its simplicity, and charm in its world. It’s a future that we can envision, because it is so real and nostalgic even as it is innovative and beguiling. It’s the kind of world that people can’t help but love. If we could make our audience live in this world with us, if we could make them dream and enjoy the ideas we’ve put forward, then that’s how we’d succeed in the end. Once they’ve invested in the story and are enamored by the details, they’re then listening to the VO and understanding our message. And that’s what will really make the difference.
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for Ocean52
Credit List

Directed by: GMUNK
Written by: Mauricio Alarcon
Executive Producer: Aymi Beltramo
Agency: Conquistadors
Production Companies: JOJX, Teenager
Director of Photography: Joe Picard
Executive Producer: Pedro Aragao de Oliveira
Executive Producer: Jackson Morton
Executive Producer: Joe Care
Producer: Jesy Odio
Producer: Sam Cohan
Production Designer: Maxwell Smith
Editorial: 1606 Studio, Beast Editorial
Editors: Brian Lagerhausen, Brian Sanford
Visual Effects Company: MPC LA
Head of Production: Colin Clarry
Senior Producer: Karena Ajamian
Senior Flame Artist: Claus Hansen
Flame Artist: Sam Shiftlett
Flame Artist: Sean Anderson
After Effects Artist: Anton Thallner
VFX Supervisor: Daniel Seddon
Opening Title: Alex Trochut
Interface Design: Nicolas Lopardo
Drone Photography: Bryant Place
Titles: Freddy Arenas, Luis Palencia, Gabi Guiard
Product Shot: Frank Guzzone
Color: CO3 NY
Colorist: Dustin Wadsworth
Mix: Beacon Street Studios, Plush NYC
Music: Betty The Shark & Lee-Ann Curren
Track: “Summer Bizarre”