This is the limbering up time, the warm-up before the off. In 60 and 45 seconds, the new Audi R8 zooms through 70 years of motor racing history. “Warm up” is also the title of the new sports car’s TV commercial, which will be premiered in Germany on 6 April when the blockbuster “I, ROBOT” starring Will Smith (and the Audi RSQ) is broadcast on the RTL channel. The commercial was shot over six days in Mexico at an altitude of more than 2,000 metres and uses 1,050 extras. Its tagline: “The Audi R8 – Born of powerful ideas”. The production was masterminded by Hamburg agency kempertrautmann.
“Time and time again during recent decades, Audi has led the way forward with its innovative technologies: the mid-mounted engine, aluminium lightweight construction, quattro drive and our FSI petrol direct injection technology. We’re bringing all this together in the new Audi R8, and our journey through time creates a link from our new sports car to the core values of our brand,” says Jagoda Becic, Head of Advertising at AUDI AG.
Filming in Mexico kicked off at the beginning of December last year. Gerhard Kiefer, responsible for the production of commercials at Audi, explained that, “We chose Mexico as the location for several reasons, the most important being that we had access to two racetracks at the same time for the filming work and that this location enabled us to obtain top-class technical equipment and props from nearby Hollywood.”
No less than three lorry loads of clothing including countless wigs, false moustaches and accessories from the different eras, not to mention kilos of make-up, were provided to ensure that the film’s five actors and 1,050 extras were authentically attired. It was extremely important that the clothing used in the film was in keeping with the different eras. Also fulfilling this requirement were remodelled historic backdrops, five original vehicles from the 1920s and 1930s, six original 1950s vehicles and the replica of an Auto Union Type C racing car dating from 1937, all of which were transported to the location especially.
Filming took place over six days at two different locations in Mexico. The huge team spent three days at Mexico City’s Autodromo track, situated at an altitude of 2,300 metres. Filming then moved for three more days to a private racetrack 2,600 metres above sea level in the vicinity of Tulancingo. Cameraman Ian Foster, who also worked on productions such as the James Bond movie “Tomorrow Never Dies” and “Alexander”, directed by Oliver Stone, shot no less than ten kilometres of film. During the post-production phase in London, the material was edited in HD quality, a process that lasted one and half months.
The TV commercial starts at a racetrack during the 1930s. Away from the track, racing cars are being prepared for their big moment; photographers and reporters are flocking around the crowd of excited onlookers when, suddenly, the Audi R8 drives through the scene. The new sports car makes a similar entrance in the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s, leading up to the moment when the R8 finally takes up pole position on the grid at an ultra-modern circuit crowded with spectators. Meanwhile, a commentator has been listing Audi’s engineering achievements down the years. Then the starting lights at the racetrack are faded in and the commentator says, “70 years of preparation – for this start.” The lights flick off and the Audi R8 powers away. Next comes the tagline: “The Audi R8 – Born of powerful ideas”.
Overview of the R8 commercial
Name of commercial: “Warm up”
Length: 45 seconds and 60 seconds
First broadcast on TV: 6 April 2007
Directed by: LynnFox trio of directors (Patrick Chen, Bastian Glassner and Christian McKenzie)
Camera: Ian Foster, who also worked on the James Bond film “Tomorrow Never Dies” and “Alexander”, directed by Oliver Stone
Production: Tony Petersen Film GmbH, Hamburg; ten kilometres of film were shot
Post-production: The Mill, London, where one and a half months were spent editing the film in HD quality
Agency: kempertrautmann, Hamburg
Filming period: Six days in December 2006
Location: Mexico; three days at Mexico City’s Autodromo track at an altitude of 2,300 metres; three days at a private racetrack 2,600 metres above sea level in the vicinity of Tulancingo
Participants: Five actors, 1,050 extras and 100 crew members
Vehicles: Two Audi R8 models in Ice Silver
Historic vehicles: Five original vehicles from the 1920s and 1930s, six original 1950s vehicles and the replica of an Auto Union Type C racing car dating from 1937