Uprooted

D+ Original

You Ask

Take us on the emotional journey of Sherri Warren and her family in their search for justice through a compelling trailer and promo campaign to announce the streaming debut of the Discovery+ limited series, Uprooted. Then, switch from right brain to left to expertly execute a suite of 40+ deliverables for everything from in-app placement, to press, to cross channel, and let’s not forget all aspects of social.

We Answer

This project hit home. Quite literally. With a description promising a pursuit of truth for the suspicious hanging death of a Black teenager in the mid-1980’s set in Montgomery County, Associate Creative Director, Erica Kern, was shocked to discover that the Montgomery County referenced was her hometown backyard. Stunned by this fact and the tragic turn of events detailed in the series, this instantly became a passion project. Simply put, the world needs to know about Keith Warren and his family’s struggle for justice.

We partnered to provide a full range of creative services including creative direction, writing, producing, edit, sound design and mix as well as a custom graphics package.

With the help of the writer/producer team, a wide range of scripts were penned and the client ultimately landed on the team favorite. We love when that happens. Clever copy seeks to deliver on the limited series title, Uprooted, with a complementary custom graphics package that utilizes an abstract graphic build across the title cards featured throughout the trailer.

collage of tree roots and frayed ropes

Moodboard: Initially drawn to how unraveled rope resembles tree roots, we began exploring concepts that would start with a rope and unravel throughout the graphic build.

transparent 3d root image
image of root shapes
roots  designed without background
completed picture of roots

WIP root development: Beginning in the upper left, edge loops are adjusted in modeling to help create a natural shape, followed by several iterations of various texture mapping to create an unearthed feel to the roots. Lastly in the bottom right frame the 3D render passes come together forming the basis of a moody final composite.

The trailer features various angles of a root structure to deliver on the series title with the ultimate reveal of a sculptural root ball. Knotted in an infinity shape with gnarled roots at its ends, it metaphorically represents the continuous struggle that Keith Warren’s family has faced in their search for justice.

image of knotted rope with root structure coming out of one side
image of knotted rope
image of knoted rope that has root texture and the word Uprooted above it

Upper left corner: WIP roots are being modeled onto the final knot shape. Upper Right: Texture maps in development being layered and adjusted for a heavily weathered look. Bottom: The final title composite of the title card completed with additional atmospheric elements to complement the story tone.

Exploring movement, it was decided the root visuals would remain stationary with the camera moving around the elements with the intention of conveying the halted frustration the family feels at every dead end they encounter in the justice system. A strong singular hazed light source, heavy sense of atmosphere, and shallow depth of field evokes an unsettling feeling.

Heavily featuring the woods and trees, the edit also contributes to reinforcing the series title, scene of the crime and final resting place for Keith Warren. The documentary style intro grips viewers and introduces them to Sherri’s softer side before we meet the determined fighter who is carrying the torch now that her mother has passed away. Featured imagery is personal and cinematic to amplify the emotional plight of the Warren family, while pacing builds in intensity to elicit the outrage the limited series summons within after watching.

Fun Fact

Sadly, there is nothing to joke about here. Find out more about Keith Warren’s case and how you can help Sherri Warren seek justice here.