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BIGSMACK Boosts Science Channel's New Show 'Large Dangerous Rocket Ships'

Studio Creates and Designs Inventive Promo Spot and Comprehensive Toolkit

SPARTA, NJ, August 12, 2010 ( Nothing says 'guy-fun' like rocket science and the possibility of things blowing up. Those two elements are conveniently combined in Science Channel's new show 'Large, Dangerous Rocket Ships.' Ahead of its July 5 premiere, BIGSMACK, the live action/design studio led by Creative Director Andy Hann, created promo spots (:30 and :60), and a comprehensive toolkit for Science Channel producers for use in future teasers, bumpers, promos and more.

Part reality show, part competition, Large, Dangerous Rocket Ships centers on rocket enthusiasts from around the country who gather every year in Lucerne Valley, CA for the ultimate event in competitive rocketry. Contestants launch homemade rockets of all types and sizes (including one made from a port-o-potty) to altitudes of up to 100,000 feet.

''This is our first assignment for the Science Channel, but we know the creative team and producers well thanks to our work for sister channel Discovery,'' Hann says. ''They trusted us to take the concept, which they loved, and bring it to life. The idea was to have fun with the notion of launching these crazy things, and make it very guy-centric, while giving it this comedic-bent because you never really knowing what object is going to launch.''

Working on an extremely tight turnaround of just two weeks - an amazing task given the amount of 3D animation in the spot -- the 'Large, Dangerous Rocket Ships' promo begins with a shot of a vast desert with four distinct objects in the foreground - a lawn chair, a barbecue, a pick-up truck and an actual rocket that looks to be about six or seven feet tall.

Seemingly shot with a handheld camera, we hear a group of unseen guys narrate the action. The promo takes an unexpected twist as the guys' countdown and instead of the rocket, the lawn chair fires up and launches, followed by the barbecue. Finally when the actual rocket is set to go, there's an unexpected breakdown. The guys are temporarily disappointed, that is until the rocket lights up and lifts off dramatically to a chorus of cheers.

The promo ends with the BIGSMACK created tagline: ''Average guys, not so average competition.''

To create the detailed 3D animation and compositing, BIGSMACK called in their newest talent Sr. Visual Effects Director Dave Zeevalk and Sr. Art Director Jason Salo. Working with just a few still photos of the Mohave desert with a pick-up truck in the background, the team added extensive amounts of 3D animation -- everything from specific objects like the rocket, the lawn chair and the barbeque; to the smoke and fire that accompanies each launch; to the miscellaneous debris and dirt around the objects. In addition, they also enhanced the complex lighting and shadows.

''This project came together so fast that getting it done required a leap of faith on our part and the clients,'' Hann adds. ''In a way that was liberating because we didn't have time to over think things. We had to trust the concept and our own instincts and go for it.''

Lead by Creative Director Andy Hann, BIGSMACKtv is a full service creative agency specializing in the broadcast industry. From their offices in downtown Philadelphia, BIGSMACKtv creates, produces, designs and posts image and promotional campaigns for the world's leading entertainment providers. Recent clients include Discovery Channel, Nat Geo, HBO, Comedy Central, Sundance and A&E, among others. For more information contact: Brett Ashy at The Ashy Agency ( HYPERLINK "", 323-464-2749) or go to HYPERLINK ""

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Client: Science Channel
Project: "Large Dangerous Rocket Ships" promo

Agency/Production/Design/Post: BIGSMACK, Philadelphia, PA
Creative Director: Andy Hann
Sr. Visual Effects Director: David Zeevalk
Sr. Art Director: Jason Salo
Executive Producer: Heidi Erney
Producer: Tommy Leonard
Visual Effects: Jeremy Fernsler
3D Animators: Adam Stockholm, Kevin Fillie


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