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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Making of the Hyundai Genesis Coupe Super Bowl Ads

Hyundai Genesis Coupe Promo

Super (Bowl) Coupe: A Behind-the-Scenes Video Look at Rhys Millen's Epic Laps in Hyundai's Rear-Drive Sports Coupe

Genesis: the time or circumstances of something's coming into being

Hyundai's rear-driven Genesis vision first came into being during last year's Super Bowl with commercials for its Genesis Sedan, the luxury car that's helping to redefine the Korean brand's image in the U.S. Now, on Feb. 1, Hyundai will once again use the super pulpit to introduce its 2010 Hyundai Genesis Coupe to an audience of some 100 million around the world.

Hyundai has reportedly paid as much as $6 million for two 30-second spots in each half of Super Bowl XLIII between the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers.

To help Hyundai make a splash with its Super Bowl ads, both employing a theme dubbed "The Epic Lap," the brand turned to Rhys Millen, a veteran wheelman with a streak of Knievel in him (see his recent New Year's 2009 Vegas truck flip for more). He's also a master of the art of dorifto (he's won multiple drifting championships) and an all-around hot shoe with years of experience in films (he was a stunt driver for recent the Dukes of Hazzard movie, among others). Millen also recently collaborated with Hyundai on the RMR Racing Hyundai Genesis Coupe for last year's SEMA show.

For the "Epic" shoot, Millen was tossed the keys to a pre-production Coupe and unleashed on Road Atlanta's 2.54-mile, 12-turn circuit last December. Millen deftly weaved the Genesis Coupe between camera vehicles, spun it dozens of times while sound men daringly dangled their boom mics within inches of the whirling, squealing machine, and otherwise flogged it at ten-tenths for 50-plus laps. The Coupe kept coming back for more, only pleading for fresh rubber along the way.

Rhys Millen Straps in

"We're taking this car in a controlled environment to the max, hitting speeds of a 125 mph, braking deep, firing in, popping over the rumble strips, it's awesome, a great feeling," Millen said during the shoot.

Adding a dramatic effect to one of the "Epic" commercials will be a solo of Bach's "Cello Suite #3 in C, Gigue" by Grammy-winning cellist Yo-Yo Ma, choreographed to Millen's controlled mayhem behind the wheel. Hyundai is also planning an online experience where users will be able to splice together snippets from the shoot and create an "Epic Lap" of their own.

Motor Trend video producer extraordinaire Michael Suggett was afforded an opportunity to go behind-the-scenes during the shoot at Road Atlanta. Our exclusive video presentation outlines the painstaking work and long hours put in by the dozens of dedicated folks tasked with putting together the super spots. And of course, we've also got plenty of footage of Millen getting wild in the car.

We'll have much more on the Genesis Coupe coming soon, but until then, click below to enjoy our inside look at what went into making Millen's laps so epic.

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