Nike China “Dear Kobe” by Francois Rousselet and Mathematic

Division director Francois Rousselet and the Mathematic animation team in Paris mix live-action with inky animation in this homage to Glen Keane’s Oscar-winning animated short “Dear Basketball” for Nike China thru Wieden+Kennedy Shanghai.

Mathematic EP/owner Guillaume Marien: “When we started this project, we knew we needed to be very considerate when defining the animation style and effects. The spot is a poignant reminder of the life of Kobe Bryant, and we knew it would be viewed by millions of fans around the world.

“Mathematic designed the animation with ink splotches that transform into characters, props, and environments, in order to reflect and symbolize memories and Chinese tradition.

“Designers rotoscoped line animation over live-action footage, tracing Bryant’s face and background environments to give the spot a hand-crafted flair and fresh aesthetic.

“To express greater depth and emotion in the line animation, the Mathematic team added shadows and details that mirrored the original footage and further captured Bryant’s resemblance.”
Nike China Dear Kobe commercial | STASH MAGAZINE

Nike China Dear Kobe commercial | STASH MAGAZINE

Nike China Dear Kobe commercial | STASH MAGAZINE

Nike China Dear Kobe commercial | STASH MAGAZINE

Nike China Dear Kobe commercial | STASH MAGAZINE

Nike China Dear Kobe commercial | STASH MAGAZINE

Client: Nike China
VP Marketing Greater China: Steve Tsoi
Senior Creative Director: Simon Lee
Brand Communications Senior Director: Che Lin
Nike GC Creative Strategy Director: Michael Chien
Assistant Creative Strategist: Yuling Yao
Senior Art Director: Lei Zhang
Senior Copywriter: Nokkia Wang
Copy Manager: Jimmy Chen

Agency: Wieden+Kennedy, China
Executive Creative Director: Ian Toombs, Vivian Yong
Creative Directors: Jeff Fang, Matt Meszaros
Senior Creatives: Josh King, Michael Mcguire
Art Director: Zhong How
Copywriter: Gem Xu
Executive Producer: Bernice Wong
Senior Producer: Fang Yuan
Head of Designers: Fish Ho
Designer: John Yao

Production: Division/The Pandemic Story
Executive Producer: Jules De Chateleux, Ay Wei Wong
Director: Francois Rousselet
Producer: Areta Mak
Line Producer: Ser Ping Lee
Production Manager: Zhang Ye
1st Assistant Director: Jo Chan
Stylist: Avivi Wang
Asst. Stylist: Ling Li
Art Director: Hsiao Shu Chang
Assistant Art Director: Kuan Li Huang
DOP: Li Dong Jun
Focus Puller: Wang Jun Hui
Gaffer: Wang Jin Dong
Grip: Eric Xi
Casting: Ariel, Sun Yi Tong, Xu Chen Jie

Ink Shoot
Director: François Rousselet
Producer: Jules de Chateleux
Line producer: Lola Burelle
Illustrator: Yue Wu
Ink artist: Stéphane Levallois
Ink assistant: Arthur Sevestre
Dop: Amine Berrada
1st AC: Martin Robiquet
Photo assistant: Gabin Roux
Location manager: Michael Richez
Key Grip: François Dupuis
Gaffer: Romain Mosti

Animation: Mathematic Paris
Executive Producer: Guillaume Marien
Executive Creative Producer: Rebecca Rice
Illustrator: Yue Wu
Background Illustrator / Ink Choreographer: Stéphane Levallois
Line Producers: Nadège Moreau, Sebastián Eyherabide
Project Supervisor: Emeric Samier
Lead Animator: Bishoy Gendi
Animators: Hozen Britto, Peter Lowey, Reg Isaac, Chiara Sgatti, Pierre Rutz, Xavi Siria, Joe Cheng, Marianne Le Moigne, Adeline Jactat, Rémi Bastié, Chloé Hamon, Boris Belghiti, Clara Estable, Clemence Drion, David Bradshaw
Lead Compositing: Daniel Rodrigues
Compositing Artists: Emeric Samier, Bertrand Avril, Arnaud Laplace, Vincent Ewald, Julien Michel, David Pelletier, Astrid Tessier
Lead Flame Artist: Clément Germain
Flame Artists: Hugo Aymerich, Greg Langlois

Post: MPC Shanghai/LA
Post Producer: Rachel Zhao, Sasha Pace
Shooting Supervisor: Barry Greaves
Colorist: Ricky Gausis, Nikola Stefanovic
Online Artist: Eason Wu

Audio: Lime Studios
Executive Producer: Susie Boyajan
Sound Design: Rohan Young
Mixing: Joel Waters
Asst. Mix Engineer: Collin Thomas

Audio House: Hush Studios Shanghai
Executive Producer: Bonie Wu
Sound Engineer: Eson Wang