A 15 second live action/animated commercial for the thriller and companion web experience from Dean Koontz: 77 Shadow Street. The unique 360 degree immersive content was produced by The Other House along with InTheMo Interactive.
Client – Random House
Director – Chris Roth
DP – Steve Roth
Producer – Lara Ravdjee Roth
Creative Director – Amber Votel
Wardrobe / Prop Stylist – Amber Votel
Animator – Chris Roth
Sound Design – Chris Roth
Website – InTheMo Interactive
In addition to creating the thrilling trailer above (which has been airing on jumbo-trons in Time Square and Herald Square in New York city thru the new year), we also spearheaded the physical production portion of 77shadowstreet.com, a unique interactive website featuring state of the art 360 degree video technology. The online experience, which was built by InTheMo Interactive, allows visitors to virtually explore the haunted apartments within the vast Pendleton building, the fictional setting of the novel. The Other House tackled the logistics of the video shoots, locations and set designs as well as the post production effects needed to bring the paranormal happenings to life. The ominous sound design was concocted by Darian Zahedi.
After exploring maps, photos, newspaper clippings and more, an online visitor is free to explore a total of 27 rooms in the virtual Pendleton building. Within each room, the user is able to freely control the direction of the camera with their mouse or trackpad. In order to achieve this immersive effect, The Other House employed a state-of-the-art 360 degree video camera. The camera, with its unique spherical design and 11 lenses, captures video simultaneously in all directions at once. When viewed in the proper web player, the video format allows users to manually “look” in any direction with their mouse or touch pad during playback.
The unique 360 degree camera outputs to a wildly distorted video format known as “equi-rectangular” footage. The idea is reminiscent of the way a map of the globe can be peeled off a sphere and viewed within a flat rectangle setting. This format provided a host of challenges when it came to implementing special effects in post production phases as many conventional motion tracking tools cannot properly interpret the distorted geometry of the 360 degree video format.
Through vigorous testing and research, The Other House developed a host of new tricks for working with the footage, including techniques which would allow various parts of a room to be “un-distorted” temporarily for digital manipulation, and then later “re-distorted” back to their original format.
In addition to the on-location room captures, The Other House shot on a green screen sound stage in downtown Los Angeles to film some additional nightmare creatures and apparitions featured in the story. The unsettling manifestations were later composited into various rooms throughout the 360 degree experience.
Cale Thomas assisted once again with his killer make up skills, turning actor Vinnie Van Hinte, into a ghoulish figure. Check out the time-lapse of parts of the make up process and shoot below!
To achieve the size, scope and opulence described in the novel The Other House captured 27 different interiors across seven unique locations in the greater Los Angeles area. Each room provides numerous visual effects allowing viewers a glimpse of the terrifying events that unfold in full for readers of 77 Shadow Street.
A before and after of the Pendleton Elevator. Mirrors were replaced with bird murals created by John Votel, as described in the book.
The novels of Dean Koontz have sold more than 400,000,000 copies to date. Thirteen of his novels have risen to number one on the New York Times hardcover bestseller list. Sixteen of his books have risen to the number one position in paperback. His books have also been major bestsellers in countries as diverse as Japan and Sweden.