Bully Pictures' Sebastian Weiland Orchestrates an Opus for GMC


73-piece orchestra featured in ad launching the all-new 2017 Acadia

Last Updated: August 1, 2016 9:58 pm GMT
(Los Angeles, California--August 1, 2016) The precision engineering of GMC’s redesigned Acadia is compared to a world-class orchestra in a beautifully-crafted

, directed by ’Bully Pictures' Sebastian Weiland for Digitas and Leo Burnett. Shots of a symphony orchestra, playing the introduction to The Who’s classic Eminence Front, are seamlessly blended with images of the “next generation” SUV driving through spectacular urban locales and landscapes. The voiceover invokes the “confidence” and “attention to detail” embodied by both orchestra and vehicle.
Bully Pictures

The commercial’s cast included 73 professional musicians led by Kazem Abdullah, an American-born conductor who serves as General Music Director of the city of Aachen, Germany. They perform the Who song (in a special orchestration from music house Mophonics) live. “None of the musicians had met before, but after a couple practice sessions, they sounded like they had been playing together for years,” notes Weiland. “It was an amazing experience.” The production included shoots in New York and Seattle.

Weiland subtly reinforces the comparison between the orchestra and Acadia through a series of artfully-designed shots. The strings of a cello mirror the cables of a suspension bridge. An image of the SUV’s steering wheel and gauges dissolves into an overhead shot of the musicians arranged in a nearly identical, semi-circular pattern.

“We use very clean shots throughout,” Weiland observes. “It was important to me that we built the story. Near the end, we transition from inside the cabin of the car to a wide shot of the audience giving the orchestra a standing ovation. That leads to our hero moment, as we reveal the car in all its beauty and glory.”

Weiland has been directing high-end car commercials for nearly a decade, and is known for the unique way he lights and shoots cars, his attention to detail, and for the passion evident in his work. “This project involved a great collaboration with the agencies’ creative teams and the client,” he says. “All around, it was a great match.”

About Bully Pictures:

Bully Pictures is a full-service commercial broadcast, web viral, branded content production company located in Santa Monica, California. The company’s roster includes Javier Aguilera, Dustin Lance Black, Fredrik Callinggard, Peter Care, Anne Fletcher, Gaute Hesthagen, Kim Jacobsen, Justin Simien, Taylor Steele, Morten Tyldum, Tripp & Tyler, Sebastian Weiland, and Erik Van Wyk. For more information, write info@bullypictures.com


See the spot:


Agencies: Leo Burnett, Detroit. Steve Chavez, Chief Creative Officer; Erik Zaar, Executive Producer.

Digitas. Patrick McHugh, Group Creative Director; Bill Woodard, Senior Copywriter; Jason Talbot, Senior Art Director.

Production: Bully Pictures. Sebastian Weiland, Director/Director of Photography; Jason Forest, Executive Producer; Gianfilippo Pedrotti, Executive Producer.

Edit: Butcher Editorial, David Henegar, Editor; Rob Van, Executive Producer.

Music: Mophonics, Kris Roggemann, Executive Producer.


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