Hollywood VFX veteran Michael Fink directs first ad in India


MUMBAI: Michael Fink, Hollywood visual effects veteran and Academy Award winner, has directed his first Indian TV commercial for Lotte Coffy Bite. Fink is president, VFX Worldwide at Prime Focus. The Mumbai based company was appointed by Rediffusion Y&R and MAD Entertainment for the toffee brand’s latest TV commercial.

The commercial shows that the Coffee-Toffee argument propagated by the Coffy Bite brand has moved beyond humankind and into the realm of the animal kingdom. The ad shows two frogs – Leo and Dino – vying for a Coffy Bite. As the frogs needed to emote and converse, the frogs had to be completely created using CGI and visual effects, each with its own unique and distinct characteristics.

Fink said, "It was a delightful experience to be working on an Indian TV commercial. This is a tipping point for Indian advertising with increased exposure and involvement of global specialists in Indian advertising projects. I hope to be associated with many more challenging projects like the Coffy Bite commercial in the future." 

Fink’s direction of the Coffy Bite commercial follows his involvement on the recent McDonald’s "No Fry Left Behind" campaign for DDB Chicago, which was shortlisted at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival last month. Fink consulted on the McDonald’s spot, which was posted by Prime Focus in London. The global cascading of skills and talent from feature films to commercials is a key part of the Prime Focus "Worldsourcing" business model. 

Prime Focus lead visual effects supervisor Merzin Tavaria said, "The success of this commercial is attributed to the brilliant team work between Rediffusion – Y&R and Prime Focus. The creative idea developed by Rediffusion was well-structured, which allowed us to execute it so realistically. In the process, we are happy to be playing a role in catapulting India on the global VFX arena."

"The Coffy Bite commercial marks the globalization of Indian advertisements. We are proud to be at the leading edge of this trend and hope to see more of such confluence of the West with Indian advertising. This process has been made possible due to our Global Digital Pipeline business model, which allows us to leverage our resources and technology from across our global locations to create a spectacular outcome delivered on-time and on-budget," added Prime Focus founder and global CEO Namit Malhotra.

Fink received his Academy Award in 2008 for his work on The Golden Compass. His volume of work include Hollywood projects such as Vanilla Sky, The Road to Perdition, X-Men and Batman Returns.