Sony Visits World’s Largest Model Railroad to Test Its Cameras on Miniature Scenes

W+K explores Northlandz in film, interactive site

Last month, Sony rolled out a sweeping celebration of its own contributions to technology and the arts. Now, it's diving deep on the same subject, taking viewers on a tour of Northlandz, a giant model railroad museum in New Jersey, as miniatures photographer Matt Albanese uses a Sony QX100 camera to capture images of the tiny scenery.

Northlandz's creator, Bruce Zaccagnino, co-stars in the documentary-style ad, offering such bits of humble-bragging genius as: "Thousands of people will come out, and they'll say this is a wonder of the world. … I don't think it's a wonder of the world. It's not the Taj Mahal." Fact is, the landscape is quite impressive. The photos that come out of Albanese's work are plenty cool, too, and a nice testament to the potential of the camera.

But the four-minute documentary, created with Wieden + Kennedy, makes the whole thing feel pretty forced and awkward. "For this project I chose a camera that will get me into tight spaces and gives me unique vantage points," says Albanese. That may be the selling point, but the footage and the photographs make the point well enough without the contrived sales pitch. A little less throat-clearing and philosophizing might serve the spot well, too—but at the end, Zaccagnino's extra talent makes for a perfectly oddball kicker.

The campaign includes a website, www.Separate–, that goes beyond the film and features an interactive companion piece with three panoramas you can rotate and zoom into.

Credits below.


Client: Sony

Project: Be Moved – Separate Together

Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.

Creative Directors: Mike Giepert, Dan Hon

Copywriter: Charlie Gschwend

Art Director: Devin Gillespie

Information Architect: Jason Sack

Creative Technologist: Billy McDermott

Head of Interactive Production: Pierre Wendling

Head of Production: Ben Grylewicz

Content Producer: Katie Reardon

Account Team: Trish Adams, Diana Gonzalez, Nick Larkin

Associate Director of Technology: Ryan Bowers

Quality Assurance: Robb Hand, Rachel Mason

Executive Creative Directors: Joe Staples, Susan Hoffman

—Web Film Partners

Production Company: m ss ng p eces

Director: Josh Nussbaum

Executive Producers: Ari Kuschnir, Kate Oppenheim

Head of Production: Dave Saltzman

Line Producer: Veronica Balta

Director of Photography: Alex Khudokon

Editorial Company: m ss ng p eces

Editor: Adam McClelland

Post Producer: Amy Crowdis

Colorists: Nat Jencks, Adam McClelland

Composer, Original Score: Matt Abeysekera

Sound Design, Mix: Eli Cohn

—Interactive Experience Partners

Development Partner Company: Bossa

Executive Creative Director: Hans Weiss

Creative Technologist: Jeramy Morrill

Lead Developers: Jeramy Morrill, Josh Gross, Matt Greene

Creative Director: Andrezza Valentin

Art Director: Sarah Skapik

Producer: Nic Santana

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@GabrielBeltrone Gabriel Beltrone is a frequent contributor to Adweek.