You’ve had your vision and talent forever. Now, you’ve got your story locked, your treatment ready, and your big meeting with the Studio Chief on the books…It’s time to drive on to the Tongal lot and Pitch your LEGO City Mini Movie—and you didn’t even have to spend five thankless years in the mailroom to do it.
That’s right, LEGO City wants all you budding Bricky Bruckheimers out there to bring some cinematic inspiration to the product line by producing a series of exciting, story-driven Mini Movies that will highlight its depth, find an edge and grab the attention of a slightly older demographic.
When considering your Pitch and approach on this one, here are some words of advice:
--If it ain’t on the page, it ain’t on the stage (popular adage): Be thorough, descriptive and tell big chunks of story. This will help both you and LEGO when it’s time to go into production.
--A good film script should be able to do completely without dialogue (David Mamet): In this case, you have one line of dialogue to work with and it’s “Hey,” so make sure your story is as visually compelling and driven by exposition. Film is a visual medium first and foremost, so think about how to drop the dialogue crutch and convey story/plot points through visual cues.
--Second act trauma makes for third act magic (Robert Evans): Focus on setting up a story with conflict and drama that comes to a satisfying and exciting resolution.
Create the greatest animated short film ever made. Do it using LEGO City.
Please keep in mind that the objective of this campaign is to dial up the “coolness” of the theme, not by means of amplifying violence but by adding depth and complexity to the story. A combination of action, humor and unexpected twists are essential to capture both the young and older audience. We want kids to fall in love and stay in love with City.
--Major Themes: This project will focus on FOUR Major Themes, which you may work off of:
• Police- it is the most iconic and broad assortment within the City portfolio. It is a concept that is loved and understood by boys of all ages. The City police force is located both in the City and its outskirts (the forest). The Forest and City police forces team up to chase and capture the crooks in and outside of the City to ensure that the LEGO City citizens are safe. The LEGO City police force is known for having high-tech vehicles and search equipment.
• Fire- The second most iconic assortment within City. The City fire squad also teams up with the forest fire squad to keep the City and its outskirts safe and can also respond to many other emergencies. The fire assortment is broad and packed with cool vehicles.
• Great Vehicles- 5 different vehicles that are not tied to any of the City themes but play an important role in the day-to-day of any City (Garbage Truck, Ambulance, etc.)
• Mining- is a brand new theme that brings a lot of action and excitement to the LEGO City universe. The LEGO City gold mine is located just outside the City. The theme is packed with amazing heavy duty vehicles that are used to perform many, many tasks in the LEGO City gold mine. Every single vehicle within the Mining theme is differentiated and has unique functions and features. Dynamite is key component of the Mining theme; it is used to blow up the big rocks in order to extract the gold. The LEGO City miners perform dangerous and challenging tasks and belong to the long list of heroes of the LEGO City. But watch out for the crooks! They are on the look out for gold.
--Tone and Key Elements:
• Humor – Humor is your catalyst ingredient: use it to turn the action and drama into a fun break-away.
• Action Packed! – It’s like John Woo and Tony Scott had a baby and it was your movie keeping us on the edge of our seats. Use action and tension to heighten the sense of urgency and danger.
• Bumbling Crooks! – The crooks are everywhere, stealing everything -- regardless of its value...BUT they always get caught!!
• Plot Twists – Unexpected twists and turns will only make the stories more engaging, but don’t force it…these should feel natural to your story.
• Special Effects – While by no means a requirement, if it’s at your disposal don’t be shy in trying to make these cinematic.
• LEGO City characters can only say “Hey!!!” or make noises; no talking (please reference the mini movies) http://city.lego.com/en-us/Movies/Default.aspx.
• Only yellow characters (no ‘fleshies’). Characters may have guns, but they never fire them, they hit the bad guys with them.
• No grim “Tarantino” violence, aggressiveness, profanity, etc.
• Do not use buildings or models that are not part of LEGO. Videos should predominately feature buildings and models from LEGO City assortments.
• If you use a back drop, please make sure that they use the LEGO City skyline.
• You can mix themes together e.g. Police and Fire.
• The focus should be mostly on Police and Fire when doing a mixed theme execution.
--Target Audience: Kids ages 7 and up.
--Exposure: Videos may be featured on City.Lego.com, YouTube, LEGO Club DVD, LEGO Facebook page, and/or Cartoon Network LEGO property page.
This project will be worth a total of $30,000 and consist of two phases. Also, this tournament style process will progress differently from previous projects, so be sure to read the following information carefully.
PHASE 1: PITCH – Using text (500 characters or less), images (storyboards), video, and external links (to other supporting assets, i.e., your reel, etc.), give us your Pitch for how YOU would go about producing a animated mini-movie based on the project objective. The five most compelling Pitches will be selected and will receive a $500 production budget and LEGO City Production kit to help create their Video. Those winners (upon submitting their Winner's Affidavit and IP Assignment) will also be GUARANTEED to place in the subsequent Video Phase. So, if your Pitch is selected, you will earn a minimum of $1,500 with a 1-in-7 shot at the $12,000 first place video prize. Remember your Pitch can include any, and all, of the assets mentioned above, but you MUST include a link to some of your previous video work on Tongal or elsewhere to be considered for this phase. For an example of an effective pitch, check out Sean Clark’s winning Benjamin Moore “Find Your Perfect Color” Pitch (LINK). To avoid information cascades, all Pitches will remain private until after the video winners of the subsequent phase are announced. Alternatively, even if you don’t win the Pitch Phase or choose not to create a pitch, you will still have the opportunity to create a “Wild Card” Video completely of your own creative devices in the subsequent Phase.
PHASE 2: VIDEO – Winning Pitch creators from the previous phase will utilize their $500 advance to create a 120 second video based upon their winning materials and all other creators are invited to enter a “Wild Card” submission. Remember, the five Pitch winners are GUARANTEED cash prizes as are two of the Wildcard creators.
--Music: Tongal has partnered with Audiosocket, a boutique music licensing and technology company representing more than 2,400 emerging bands, composers and record labels. This is not "stock" music. It is an inventory of more than 40,000 original, culturally relevant songs and music that have been compiled into a premium roster. Audiosocket's music will be available to Tongal members at no charge solely for their incorporation into Tongal members' submissions to the LEGO City Mini Movies Project. Tongal members are encouraged to browse the Audiosocket roster, available by clicking on the "Audiosocket" button on the right hand side of this page. If you are interested in using a track from the Audiosocket roster, as described above, just add the track(s) you want to use to your cart using the "+cart" button, then click the "checkout" button. Enter the Tongal project name and click the "purchase and download" button to acquire the track for free ($0.00). Lastly, click the "download track" button, which will initiate the music file download.
1. Videos MUST not exceed 120 seconds in length. Preferred format is HD 720p 16x9. Acceptable file formats are .mov, .avi, .mp4, .wmv. Acceptable codecs are H.264 (MP4), MPEG-4, H.263, MPGV, WMV, DivX.
2. Unless provided otherwise, all work must be your own original creation and free of any copyrighted material. You shall provide detailed information of your work regarding the source, the creator and background information as requested by Tongal.
3. Submissions should reference only the models provided by LEGO.
4. Videos must include an end bumper with the copy, “Watch more LEGO City movies or play online games at City.LEGO.com!”
5. In the event you utilize any third party materials, such as music provided by a third-party music provider, you must obtain full written license and consent from the owner of such third party materials and provide such license and consent forms to Tongal.
6. Submissions cannot contain any profanity, offensive language, nudity or otherwise objectionable material, the determination of which is solely at the discretion of LEGO.
7. Submissions must not portray LEGO in a negative way, the determination of which will solely reside with LEGO.
8. Videos must be in the English language or subtitled.
9. Limit 5 submission(s) per member, per phase.
10. Minimum 50 Pitches, or the contest will repost for 14 days.
11. Sponsor will be entitled to one reasonable round of revisions on the finished videos without providing additional compensation. Remember it's easier to re-edit than re-shoot so try to get as much coverage as possible.
12. In addition to the standard Tongal W-9, Winner Affidavit, and IP Assignment, winning video creators MUST also provide Talent, Location, and Music Releases for all assets appearing in the video as well as the project files, editing sequence and an uncompressed quicktime .mov file in either Animation or ProRes 422 codecs at either 1920x1080 or 1280x720 to claim their prize.
13. See OFFICIAL RULES for additional contest information, terms and conditions. If there is any conflict or inconsistency between these requirements and the Official Rules, the terms and conditions of these requirements shall prevail.