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Trollbäck Creates Branding Package For TCM

First new on-air branding in 10 years. (June 07, 2004)

When Turner Classic Movies decided to create its first new on-air branding in 10 years, creative director Shannon Davis returned to frequent creative partner Trollbäck & Company, NY/LA, to design and produce a subtly innovative yet classic series of ten new live-action thirty-second menus. The new look launches this month on the channel.

The menus blend textured live-action footage of urban architecture with post-production techniques in a quiet homage to Alfred Hitchcock's photography, which masterfully hinted at the life that brims just beneath static surfaces.

"TCM airs a wide variety of movies," explained Jakob Trollbäck, president and creative director of Trollbäck & Company. "They cover many eras, plots and visual styles. Trying to bring the movies and the viewers together, we noticed that the one thing they all share is a sense of physical space. Environments seemed to be a good place to start. Ultimately, we decided to focus on buildings in cities. In addition to being graphically very powerful and providing a perfect grid system for information, they seemed to contain millions of stories."

"The previous menu design was the first packaging element seen on the channel 10 years ago and everyone at the company felt very uncomfortable about changing something they thought was working just fine," according to Davis. "But when the go-ahead came, there was no question in my mind who needed to tackle this sensitive and high-profile project. I knew Trollbäck & Company already had a lot of experience with menu design on other channels, including some of our competitors. But I also knew from past experience that they are great listeners, as well as analytical thinkers, and could design menus as classic and timeless as the films that surround them."

For Trollbäck & Company, the paramount goal was to make a dense amount of information look beautiful on screen, while providing strong visual continuity and identity. Davis explains, "Because there was so much type involved, it was important to me to have a company that would exercise restraint in not only picking a typeface but laying out the information in a sensitive readable manner without gimmicks or unnecessary flash."

After the New York City location shoots, many discreet details and textures were added in post production. Shadowy figures were inserted to dart past windows, and lighting adjustments were made to magnify just-perceptible pulses of life. Shot on 35mm, each menu features a different building texture - sleek glass, faded brick, or geometric 1960's - as a backdrop for the programming information - text blocks that slide out from behind the buildings on oblique paths. A classic radio-announcer-style voiceover provides program information.

"The spots use subtle changes in light, movement, and reflection to create an almost time-lapse quality," said Nathalie de la Gorce, a creative director of Trollbäck & Company. This sophisticated visual mood was employed to appeal directly to TCM's audience of classic film lovers.

Four menus were shot for daytime and six for nighttime programming, expanded from the original assignment of eight in total. Seeking a "real life" feel to the architectural menus, Trollbäck & Company chose New York for its diversity of materials, yet avoided iconic buildings to maintain relevance to viewers everywhere.

"Trollbäck presented two concepts that were both totally on brand-harkening to what we internally refer to as the 'TCM city,' Davis said. "That made the choice for me hard. Damn them for being that good."

Trollbäck & Company most recently collaborated with TCM and Davis to design and produce the opening for TCM's month-long "Style in Motion" film festival last fall, and over the years has created several other openings in partnership with Davis.

ABOUT Trollbäck & Company
Trollbäck & Company is a bicoastal creative studio committed to generating mold-breaking visual and branding solutions. Rooted in a strong European design sensibility, the young multidisciplinary company defies pat design and production conventions, working across a variety of media - from film titles and trailers to TV commercials, environmental and architectural installations, network branding, outdoor advertising, magazine and book design. Trollbäck & Company has design and production studios on Fifth Avenue and Venice Beach.

Client Company: Turner Classic Movies, Atlanta, GA Creative Director: Shannon Davis

Trollbäck & Company: Directors: Jakob Trollbäck & Nathalie de la Gorce Creative director: Nathalie de la Gorce Art Director: Nathalie de la Gorce Designer: Justin Meredith Editor: Nicole Amato Producer: Elizabeth Kiehner Executive Producer: Julie Shevach

Music: Composer: Tommy Guerrero San Francisco, CA

Color correction: Company 3, Billy Gabor

Hardware: AVID Software: Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, AfterEffects

CONTACT INFO Trollbäck & Company Jule Shevach 212/529-1010 West Coast Sales: Stacey & Company Stacey Altman: (310) 392-5005 Craig Skrzypecki: (310) 392-5005


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Related Keywords:Trollbäck, Turner Classic Movies, Shannon Davis, Trollbäck & Company, TCM, Jakob Trollbäck, Nathalie de la Gorce,

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