Meet ‘Audrey’! The 20 Ft Marionette Of The Mayflower Moving Co. Commercial


"Audrey", the 20 ft Marionette in the Mayflower Moving Co. Commercial

By now, we have all seen this mesmerizing creature in the Mayflower Moving Company commercial.  She is 20 ft tall. she walks, her arms move, her long hair blows through the air, she blinks her eyes and she  is the epitome of grace and beauty.  Her name is “Audrey“. This truly one of the most delightful commercials on television these days. Audrey was created by Rick Lazzarini and The Character Shop.

If you have not seen the commercial, here it is.  It’s called the ‘Big Move’. It opens with a close-up of Audrey’s face as she is right in the middle of her ‘big move’ She is making her big move with the assistance of Mayflower Moving professionals who help her every step of the way. Watch her face and notices that she interacts with people with her eyes as she seemingly blinks to give approval or to simply say ‘hello’ or ‘thank you’.

(The video has been removed by the user)

Mayflower Press Release

ST. LOUIS, MO, May 16, 2010 / 24/7 Press Release/ — America’s most trusted name in moving is announcing its new services, in a big way. Mayflower is launching a new television ad campaign beginning May 17, 2010, called “Big Move.” It features a 20 foot tall marionette that is moving with the help of her trusted, Mayflower movers. The campaign was created to announce the Mayflower brand’s new full spectrum of moving and storage solutions from full-service to do-it-yourself.

The new television commercials were created by Grey Advertising, New York. They show a custom-made, 700 pound marionette that takes six professional puppeteers to handle. It took a crew eight weeks to create the marionette. To view the ads, visit Mayflower’s You Tube Channel http://www.youtube.com/mayflowermoving.

“We wanted a campaign idea that was as big as the new services that Mayflower offers, and I think we’ve found it,” Mayflower’s Chief Marketing Officer Steve Burkhardt said. “This campaign will bring increased attention to our well-known brand while helping us spread the word about Mayflower’s new services.” (read more)

One more point I’d like to make is that you would not imagine all the hard work and many hours dedicated to create this beautiful, giant girl.  Someone asked a question on one of the blogs that I read about how did they get her eyelashes to blink without any visible wires attached for manipulation – but that’s the point – her creators really went all out to make Audrey as human and believable as possible.   To bring her to life, Grey Advertising got in touch with Rick Lazzarini and his special effects company, The Character Shop.  These guys are famously known for the quality of their work, the degree of attention they give to their projects and the realism of the look and movement of their creations.  The Character Shop has created myriads of creatures for projects that we all know such as:  “Mimic”, “Foster Farm Chickens”, “Aliens”, “Shrek, the Musical”, the “Bud Frogs”, “Operation Dumbo Drop”, and many, many other iconic and memorable images and characters for commercials and clients.

Next, Grey Advertising hired the International Production Company Rabbit Content and their esteemed director, Brent Harris. Together, Lazzarini, Harris and Noel Cottrell, Grey Advertising’s executive creative director, collaborated to design and create the now memorable and iconic 20 ft marionette known as Audrey.  (I know this has nothing to do with anything but in my research for this post I learned that Mr. Cottrell is  a tall man himself – 6’8” , hmm.)

To see how it all came together, click here, here and here.  Fabulous!

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