Translation And Sonic Union Jolt Kids Back To School With Lebron James For State Farm


Last Updated: January 4, 2012 7:02 pm GMT
(New York--January 4, 2012) NY-based Translation LLC and Cut + Run editor TG Herrington team up with Sonic Union mixer Michael Marinelli to impact high school kids to stay in school with Lebron James in the affecting :30 PSA “Wake Up” for State Farm Insurance. The spot, directed by Radical Media’s Dave Meyers, features a teenage boy’s nightmare of how his life might turn out if he drops out of school.

Marinelli worked closely with sound designer Brian Emrich to create the audio environment to startle the audience as effectively as the teenage boy in the spot. The 26 Seconds campaign, launched by State Farm and working in concert with U.S. Department of Education Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan, aims to help raise high school graduation rates, in hopes of strengthening neighborhoods across the country.

Translation And Sonic Union Jolt Kids Back To School With Lebron James For State Farm

“Wake Up” opens on a shot of a teenage boy reaching over to shut off his alarm clock as we hear a female voice yell, “Wake up, time for school!” He is jolted awake as he suddenly is swallowed into the bed, cutting to a shot of the teenager falling onto the same bed, once again asleep, accompanied by Lebron James’ voiceover, “Every 26 seconds a kid drops out of high school.” He falls through the bed again, this time landing in a new shot as a middle-aged version of himself on a mattress outside on a city street. He looks around incredulously as the voiceover continues, “But without an education, you never know where you’re gonna land.” He disappears into the mattress once more before we cut to a shot him springing awake in the same bed, woken by a nightmare. We cut to the boy rushing to get to his class as James continues, “Wake up. Life is too short to sleep through it.” As the boy sits down at his desk, we see James standing at the back of the classroom. He turns to the camera and finishes, “The dreams start here.” The spot closes with a shot of James walking down the school hallway followed by the State Farm logo. A voiceover concludes, “State Farm is helping kids graduate. Get involved at 26 seconds on Facebook.”

Sonic Union, New York was a concept born in 2008 between lauded mixers Michael Marinelli and Steve Rosen, and Managing Director Adam Barone. The team set out to create the finest audio shop in New York, while also maintaining a family-like feel in a location that reflected—and supported—client comfort, natural light and the artists’ unwavering love of the craft. Three years later, Sonic Union’s work has won top awards, their employees and clients play together after work, and its architecturally significant space overlooking the trees of Union Square has become a home-away-from-home for everyone who mixes there.

Sonic Union's other disciplines are growing—the addition of veteran voiceover Casting Director Maria Pappalardo brings 15 years of agency experience to the group.

Sonic Union’s flourishing Motion Graphics and VFX studio chases new ideas through design, animation and visual effects, delivering smart and fresh work for an array of creative clients. Pulling off the unexpected with unrivaled dedication, we infuse the process with equal parts love and magic. Come in and check out the state of our Union…


Client: State Farm Insurance

Title: “Wake Up” :30

Agency: Translation LLC, New York

Creative Director: Seth Jacobs

Copywriter: Jamie Cohen

Art Director: Adrian Saker

Producer: Brian Schierman

Production Company: Radical Media, Santa Monica, CA

Director: Dave Meyers

DP: Eric Treml

Executive Producers: Frank Scherma, Jim Bouvet

Line Producer: Scott Cunningham

Editorial: Cut + Run, New York

Editor: TG Herrington

Assistant Editor: Sarah Harvey

Composite/Conform: Joseph Grosso

Editorial EP: Rana Martin

Editorial Producer: Ashley Carrier

Telecine: Company3, Santa Monica, CA

Colorist: Dave Hussey

VFX: BAKED FX, Los Angeles

VFX Supervisor: George A Loucas

VFX Coordinator: Jessie Mizrahi

VFX Compositors: Kyle Belko, Evan Ghigliotty, Nick Hamer, Ryan Ega, Nick Onstad

Titles: Dress Code, New York

Partners: Andre Andreev, G. Dan Convert

Audio Post: Sonic Union, New York

Engineer: Michael Marinelli

Producer: Justine Cortale

Music: Duotone, New York

Composer: Jack Livesay

Sound Designer: Brian Emrich


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