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Cadillac filmed innovative ‘Freeze’ ad in New York

China-based production company Black & Cameron filmed on location in New York City to produce a visually innovative commercial for Cadillac.

‘Freeze’ was directed by Tao Wright and follows a suave gentleman as he leaves a freeze-framed party of New York socialites to drive the Cadillac CT6 across a frozen East River.

Everybody but the protagonist appears in ultra-slow motion. These visuals were achieved first by filming the cast at 1,000 frames per second using a high-speed mechanical robot, and then combining this with standard-speed footage of the actors standing still. 

Digital effects were used to add spray from a champagne bottle, confetti and snow, all of which appear in slow-motion, while New York was digitally dressed with snow and ice.


Visual effects work was hastened by using specialist Redshift software.

“Rendering in Redshift allowed us to process shots so much quicker and more smoothly,” said Kosta Lagis, CG supervisor at post-production company Fin Design + Effects.

“You could see exactly what they were going to look like in a matter of minutes, which was a great way of setting up lighting and the mood of the shots. 

“Tao is a creative force of nature. He was on a quest for something aesthetically impressive, so we worked together to determine what could be achieved technically and what required a more practical approach.”

New York City offers an iconic cityscape and the state has generous filming incentives, including a 5% tax credit for commercial productions. As a result the city is one of the most popular filming locations in the US.


Client: Shanghai GM
Brand: Cadillac CT6
Agency: Leo Burnett Shanghai
Production Company: Black & Cameron
Director: Tao Wright
Post Production: Fin Design + Effects
Executive Producer: Billy Becket
CG Supervisor: Kosta Lagis