Something is brewing at SK-II, and it’s not the first time they’re setting foot in untapped territory.
After their debut brand docu-drama, The Centre Lane, by award-winning director Hirokazu Koreeda – a touching story featuring Japanese Olympian swimmer and cancer survivor Rikako Ikee’s return to competitive swimming, the renowned skincare brand dabbles in film production once again, spearheading yet another groundbreaking series in the #CHANGEDESTINY universe.
This time, it’s a live-action animation hybrid – an anthology series featuring impactful stories by six powerful sportswomen who battle against forces like unrealistic expectations, social pressures, and self-doubt in this modern world.
Mixed media: live-action and animation
Combining live-action and animation, the SK-II VS series features a wide range of genres – fantasy, sci-fi, sports, and action.
Every episode is entirely independent, with its own unique style and setting, presenting the work from top-notch animation studios like Passion Pictures, Imaginary Forces, Platige Image and C3 and original music created by singer-songwriters such as John Legend and Lexie Liu.
SK-II senior brand director Yoegin Chang, appreciates live-action’s ability to display the authentic personal, emotional story of each athlete they’ve partnered with.
However, she mentioned that animation was a key medium in portraying societal pressures encountered by those athletes. This was especially so when unfurling difficult ideas and sensitive issues affecting women in ways that would have otherwise been impossible using live-action alone.
The global skincare brand’s primary goal is to inspire change among women.
The films begin and end with live-action shots of the athletes to remind people that while the VS Series may be a journey into unknown universes, the issues they represent real and tangible, even when it comes to the world’s strongest women.
Defeating your inner Kaijus
Featuring one of the world’s most venerated female gymnast Simone Biles, world-champion swimmer Liu Xiang, distinguished surfer Mahina Maeda, Japanese national women’s volleyball team, Hinotori Nippon, Olympic badminton gold medallists pair Ayaka Takahashi and Misaki Matsutomo and two-time table tennis Olympic medallist Kasumi Ishikawa, SK-II’s VS Series is a depiction of how athletes rise above society’s limitations.
Each story in the “VS” Series by SK-II STUDIO expands on the different social pressures encountered by women in their personal and professional lives: Pressure. Trolls. Rules. Image Obsession. Limitations. These manifest in the series as ‘strange beasts’ otherwise known as kaiju in Japanese and each one demystifies the inner demon every athlete must conquer as they chase after their destiny.
The universe the film is set in varies from a dystopian city in despair to a sci-fi cyberpunk-esque environment.
Viewers will witness female protagonists facing their personal kaijus – in the form of giant machine-like robots, a glowing green-like digitised monster, or tsunami-like tidal waves.
Catch the teaser here for a sneak peek – or just binge-watch the whole series at one go on their YouTube channel.
#CHANGEDESTINY with your own hands
Hinotori Nippon challenged unrealistic standards, while Takashi and Matsumoto go face to face with the ideal of “perfection” in theirs, and Liu Xiang wrestles with ambition turning into obsession – each of them has their own story to tell to inspire and encourage others to confront their own challenges and follow their destiny.
Just as SK-II was able to touch hearts and inspire others with their live-action and animation hybrid – you can churn out an impactful piece of your own.
As one of the most experienced animation production companies in Singapore, CraveFX is keen to help your brand realise its potential. Whether it’s 2D or 3D animation, we’d love to collaborate with you on your animated corporate video.