Everyone agrees the new “Archer Vice” intro to Archer season five is all sorts of amazing, with the coke blow finish topping the awesomeness. But have you found yourself wondering how exactly they made that happen? Well you are now!
The Floyd County team — as always — has been cool enough to provide us with some most excellent behind-the-scenes footage of how they pulled it off, complete with a write up from Associate Producer Mark Parsons and Lead Motion Designer Mark Paterson:
When Archer made the switch to Archer Vice for season five, show creator Adam Reed wanted a 1980s slant added to the title sequence to echo the show’s new direction. We at Floyd County Productions re-skinned the entire sequence, complete with Miami Vice pastels and cocaine-y textures. As the Internet was quick to point out, Aisha Tyler’s card is even textured with chemical diagrams of cocaine.
The “Archer Vice” title blowing away in a puff of cocaine, however, is the pièce de résistance. If that’s even how you’re supposed to use that term.
The idea came from our Associate Art Director Chad Hurd, and like all great ideas, it was said half-jokingly so that we wouldn’t rag on him if we hated the idea. But we didn’t rag on him and we didn’t hate the idea. At all. So deep was our lack of hate for the idea that it’s exactly what we did.
To create this visual effect, we decided to shoot actual footage of actual cocaine blowing away. But the legal department wasn’t happy with this idea so we had to use pizza flour instead. Using a custom-made stencil, we were able to make an Archer logo entirely of flour, and blow it away with one of those electric air pumps you get with inflatable beds.
Check it out:
It was a very messy shoot. Something you should definitely do outdoors. But the Atlanta summer heat was affecting the consistency of the flour, so our Lead Motion Designer Mark Paterson volunteered to have the shoot take place in his bathroom at home. Thirty takes later, the shoot left a thin coating of flour throughout his entire apartment, and he eventually came down with a debilitating case of flour lung. We had to send flowers, pass a card around for everyone to sign, the whole bit. We would visit him, but as previously mentioned, his apartment is covered with flour. Ick.
So watch Archer tonight on FX at 10pm EST. And when you see those “Archer Vice” titles go up in a cloud of flour, take a moment to remember Mark’s sacrifice.
And there you have it. Never again watch the new intro without thinking of some dudes in a bathroom blowing pizza flour over and over and over again to get it just right for your enjoyment.