Commercial advantage: virtual production opens up a world of possibilities for the ad industry

Mostly, in the press and on social media, we hear about how the real-time 3D and 2.5D magic of on-set virtual production and in-camera visual effects has enhanced the worlds of film-making, high-end TV and music promos. Relatively speaking, we have so far heard or seen less about how it’s being adopted in advertising.

In the video below, Andrew Park, Executive Creative Director at The Inspired Thinking Group talks to Marketing Week about how virtual production can have a huge impact on how commercials are made. This can range from saving time and money getting everybody where they need to be and looking after them while they are there to saving the planet as well as some things that might not have occurred to you. For example, always being able to shoot at any time of day or night … at any time of day or night. Then there’s creating the seemingly impossible, in-camera, on a stage instead of weeks or months later, probably in a Flame suite, as it has been done for nigh-on thirty years.

On LBB Online, the team at production company Chrome tell us how shooting on an LED stage enabled them to realise two particular clients’ artistic ambitions and achieve results that would have proved very costly and difficult to achieve within the time allowed.

Standard Chartered

To “showcase” Standard Chartered‘s “varied cultural identities, global presence, and key business areas … all whilst supporting their commitment to sustainability” and “show the breadth of Standard Chartered’s reach across industries around the world without having to physically circumnavigate the globe”, Chrome inserted 100 cast members into sets depicting 11 strategic locations across 4 continents. These environments were created using a mix of real-world cinematography and real-time 3D backgrounds created in Unreal Engine. They were able to meet a ridiculous deadline of two weeks from first cut to final delivery only because they had virtual production technology and expertise at their disposal, they say.

This project followed on from another for Standard Chartered that also used virtual production. ‘Walk with Us’ took viewers on a CG journey through a modern office, aeroplane hangar, vast wind turbine farm, modern city, futuristic warehouse, dense jungle and a railway station.


For the campaign to launch the first all-electric F-Series truck, secrecy was paramount, so the shoot was completed entirely within a fully- controllable virtual production stage and used Unreal Engine to create three vastly different environments:

  • a public charging station
  • a neighbourhood construction site
  • a campsite.  

“With a traditional production, showing the full range of product features across different environments would have taken a multi-day road trip with a moving company. With this innovative global collaboration, it instead became 72 hours of footage captured in a technology-driven studio.”

VP Robert Chew @ Chrome

Clever camera movement and art direction combined with LED stages offer creative teams flexibility they only dreamed of earlier in their careers. Now, with real-time, you can expand your horizons in relative safety on a manageable budget and, up to a point, make changes as you go.

There are many companies out there available to help you. Mondatum is one. If you are new to on-set virtual production and in-camera visual effects and you would like some advice, guidance or production support, please get in touch. Your contacts at Mondatum are John Rowe ( and Colin Birch (