Breaking Bad — When the pilot for Breaking Bad was produced, it wasn't clear at all if the series will ever make it. Etter Studio conceived the strategy and direction to make it work.
Screen cast of the user experience. The experience changes randomly every time.
Walter with gun
Still from the final interactive trailer.
Desert model
The infamous desert model, with a diameter of four metres, that we used to shoot some of the interactive parts. The model of Walter's mobile drug lab we found on eBay and painted it.
After the golden globe success of Mad Men, AMC ventured out to create a new series titled Breaking Bad. They produced a beautiful pilot for the series, starring Bryan Cranston, directed by Vince Gilligan.

So far so good. The problem is just that AMC is naturally regarded as a family channel while Breaking Bad revolves around a meth cooking high-school teacher. Therefore AMC didn't want to advertise this pilot largely – however, they needed the required quotes to get the series rolling. The talented advertising agency Mono contacted us through Unit9 and together we created a concept to solve the situation.

Our solution was to create an interactive trailer, a website which would trigger curiosity, while not giving too much of the plot away, nor the fact that Breaking Bad is about drugs. It had to be mystical and chaotic, as was the life of the protagonist of the series. We achieved this through narrating a random story, by fusing together clips from the pilot and interactive objects, which reflect breaking points in the protagonist's life.

We decided to shoot everything on camera and avoid slick computer graphics to keep the visual sensation rough and realistic. Part of this was also to build a four meter wide desert model where we used to shoot the outside scenes.

The whole production was finalised within only eight weeks and the result topped all expectations. The buzz around the series spread thanks to hundreds of blogs mentioning our campaign and the pilot reached the needed quotes. Since then, two following seasons have been produced; Breaking Bad has received widespread critical acclaim, particularly for its writing as well as Bryan Cranston's and Aaron Paul's performances, has won four Emmy Awards in addition to numerous other awards.

ROLE
Strategy, Direction, Production
BRAND
Breaking Bad
NETWORK
AMC, USA
AGENCY
Mono, Minneapolis
PRODUCTION
Unit9, London
PUBLISHED
December 2007
AWARDS
Communication Arts
FWA Site of the Day
FWA Top 50 Websites
Webby Awards: Honoree (Television Category)
Webby Awards: Honoree (Best Use Of Moving Image)
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