D100 — Brand Launch Film
Applied Materials is the leader in the field of materials engineering, which is used to produce virtually every new chip and advanced display in the world. Their work in creating and modifying materials at atomic levels and on an industrial scale is world-class and is actively altering the possibilities within the tech industry. “We Work Here” is a three-minute film celebrating 60 years of future-shaping innovation in science and technology at Applied Materials.
Applied Materials is best known for developing components for use in logic and 3D NAND memory chips. This is done through a fascinating process that takes place at a scale of nearly a billionth of a meter. An almost-alien universe composed of lasers, gases, and violent chemical reactions that create components in an environment so small that no machinery exists at a size to conduct the work. This world—a frontier of science—is affectionately known as “The Nanosphere.”
Midnight Sherpa was approached by creative agency Bruce Silverstein and Associates to produce a three-minute anthemic brand film celebrating this process for the 60th anniversary of the company. The challenge was bold and exciting: to visualize this incredible process that no human eye or camera can capture and have it be validated by some of the leading scientists in their respective fields.
To ensure scientific accuracy, the process resulted in a two-year relationship with the scientists and engineers at Applied Materials’ facility, including several working sessions to develop the visual framework and constructing true-to-scale 3D models of the components we were depicting. Our team worked with a variety of chemists, physicists, and engineers, each with a unique knowledge of specific stages of manufacturing until each process depicted met the consensus of multiple scientists.
At the time of creating this piece, the only visual references that existed were SEM and TEM scans. As such, we constructed the visual elements in each scene based on a combination of data from known factors in the process—from chemical reactivity and visual properties based on temperature to surface texture and roughness based on molecular arrangement and scale. Our team employed a wide variety of techniques and production approaches to create these otherworldly vignettes, each with their own compelling characteristics of form and simulation.
The result was an epic film that takes viewers on an immersive journey through the unseen world where Applied Materials works every day developing memory chip components. “We Work Here” premiered at the 2020 SEMICON West conference as part of CEO Gary Dickerson’s virtual keynote address. The conference was streamed virtually and thousands of attendees were able to experience the brand film through the SEMICON portal, as well as through Applied Material’s social media channels.