The last time we saw a suicide bomber in a commercial, it was in that controversial viral for the Volkswagen Polo (shown here). But over the weekend, the warehouse district east of downtown Los Angeles was transformed into a busy Baghdad market to shoot a commercial for Iraqi TV aimed at discouraging suicide bombings. “Suddenly, a fireball and a tableau of hysteria and carnage: A stuntman was blown onto the hood of a passing car. A woman wearing a head scarf, wired to an overhead crane, was jerked into the air, her body and her baby’s stroller flying in opposite directions,” says the story in the L.A. Times, which had a reporter on the scene. The production budget is said to be more than $1 million, and the ad will feature the Matrix-like “still array” effect of showing the same shot from all angles. EFX Films, based in Beirut, and 900 Frames, a Los Angeles production company, are the companies behind the ad; those funding it are choosing to remain anonymous. “If we do our job right, it could actually save lives,” says a partner at 900 Frames. Of course, it’s hard to know whether seeing the consequences of violence might deter or actually encourage would-be bombers.
—Posted by Tim Nudd