The spot centres on a physical model set of a residential building with CGI characters inhabiting it, where the entire story from a young man and woman meeting, parents having their first child, and a couple growing old together is played out within the single location. The narrative is guided by a red balloon, representing both Coca-Cola’s brand and the viewer’s visual perspective, as it passes upwards from the street. As it makes its way past the windows of the building, the viewer sees in through the windows to witness the succession of meaningful moments and milestones throughout family history. The film ends with the balloon floating up into the sky past a Coca-Cola billboard sign on the top of the block.
The use of the model set – which took eight weeks to build – gives the film a tangible, real-world feel, and every detail of the exterior and interior was meticulously hand-crafted. Every single item of furniture had to be designed and then built, including tiny tea bags, individual books, and working side lamps.
Filming then took place with two motion control rigs over ten days, with a detailed 3D animatic created to inform the physical dimensions of the building to work out the path of the camera. To make the film as believable as possible, the team plotted the path of the balloon as it passes and pauses momentarily on its journey up the building. The animatic gave exact timings needed for each performance from the stylised CGI characters, to exactly match the camera with the moves on the set. The exteriors and interiors were shot separately in order to dress and light for each scene, then it was composited together in post production.