This film is the second instalment of the Xavi series of QNB. The first film places Xavi Hernandez in his know area of expertise, the football field. This film goes a step further and emphasises his fast of lighting skills but in an even more challenging setting. While running through several buildings and even jumping out of windows, Xavi does not seem to flinch.
This challenging free-run is mainly thanks to Michael ‘Frosti’ Zernow, a professional free-runner who worked as a body double. As Sil Bulterman, Visual Effects Artist and supervisor on set, explains, “We had to film every shot twice; once in Cape Town on the set with body doubles, then later in Dubai in a studio where we created the exact same setup again with Xavi. We worked tightly together with Director of Photography Oscar
Faura to meticulously record and replicate every single lighting situation, including all the environmental interactions. This allowed us to make a seamless blend of all the action.”
As Jeroen van Berkel, Visual Effects Artist, describes, “The last shot where he jumps behind his desk is shot in the studio with Xavi and the background is in a bank in Cape Town. The scene is shot with a Dolly track backwards and we measured it out so it could be blended perfectly in compositing.”
A lot of the stunts, jumps and explosions are created in real life and not in CG, which is of course a bit more tricky on set. As Bulterman recalls, “The jump from the 10 story building was actually a real jump from stuntman Leander Lacey. He is
specialised in doing high jumps, but he had never done a jump this high before.”
All the trilling action feels more like a short motion picture than a commercial, so the colour grading went for a more filmic look. “I turned to my roots as a feature-film Colourist when I did the colour grading for the action-packed QNB ad”, explains Brian Krijgsman, Senior Colourist. “As my base for the glossy Hollywood-esque look, I used a filmstock-emulator, which I then customised, shot by shot, to give it that additional grit. And having that rich experience of working on features that originated and ended up on celluloid, helped me craft that similar filmic look and feel for QNB.”