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The making of a new world

Posted October 9, 2015 - Blog Posts

We take you behind the scenes of our new Freeview Play TV ad…

Our new TV advert takes place in a world that’s not too dissimilar to our own. Admittedly, the likelihood of an angry television goose stepping down your road is rather slim. However, like your world, our ad is teeming with life – there’s a range of unique characters, each one with their own unique style and personality. Homes, buildings and streets, were all created from scratch. Slowly but surely, from very rough sketches to meticulous 3D development, our story was brought to life.

Watch our behind the scenes video


Freddie | Freeview Play dog

Meet Freddie, the inquisitive little scamp that drives our story. This loveable rogue has undergone numerous makeovers in his short life. For starters, he’s adopted a far less formal moniker. He was once a pug, then a French bulldog, and even some kind of Corgi/Fox hybrid. But it was the ragged, hairy look you see above that best reflected Freddie’s spritely, energetic personality.

Different versions of Freddie



Anna is the heart of the story: she’s kind, sensitive, and adventurous. As you might have noticed, Anna’s a bit of trendsetter, she could even pass as an East London hipster. A team of visual development artists pored over every aspect of Anna’s character, including her facial expressions, hair, coat and jeans. Hundreds of different designs were created to help achieve Anna’s unique look and personality.

Different versions of Anna

Freeview Play TV

Freeview Play TV

And now for the hero of our story – the brave TV who makes a bolt for freedom. To make what is essentially a big glowing rectangle come to life was always going to be a challenge. Meticulous attention to detail was paid to the character’s facial expressions and angular but fluid body movement.


The bad guys

Bad TVs

With every hero, there’s a villain. In fact, our new ad is full of baddies. From run-of-the-mill henchmen (above), to some head honchos too (below).

Bad TVs

The environment

You might be surprised to hear that the town in our new ad took its inspiration from Hull. The Yorkshire city has a very open and distinctive town square, a collection of traditional British architecture, old and new, which is exactly what we were looking for.

Freeview Play town | Hull

Bring the world to life…

The directors and animators pulled all these different elements together and created an early version of our ad, which you can see below.

Find out more about Freeview Play

‘Set Yourself Free’ was created by Leo Burnett with visual effects by Electric Theatre Collective. Directed by The Line with animation by the Electric Theatre Company.


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