The Walking Dead S6

Online Media Campaign


The Walking Dead is a critical and ratings powerhouse for AMC. With multiple SAG, Writer’s Guild, Emmy and Golden Globe nominations and wins (including a Golden Globe for Best Drama) and with millions of dedicated fans, the show has defined event television.

Season 5 began and ended with the show’s biggest ratings ever, and expectations were high for season 6B. The creative direction was wide open, with one imperative: go big.

The Approach

Because the half-season finale ended with the characters making their escape through a massive horde of walkers, we honed in on the idea of creating a motion centerpiece that would feature the undead walking directly toward the viewer in an immersive piece of premium eye candy.

To bring the vision to life, we enlisted our team of video artists. Watching the first half of season 6, we discovered that the shot we envisioned did not exist. So, we set forth to create it. From the footage, we cherry picked the walkers and groups of walkers that would work best for our needs. Four artists working simultaneously painstakingly rotoscoped the individual walkers, then composited them back together, adding custom dust, fog and lighting effects to create a unique zombie horde. This eye-catching hero animation was used in every unit from large takeovers to rotational units.

To achieve the visual of zombies walking over the page through layers of fog would require transparency effects. In order to execute this within HTML banner specs, our Innovation team devised a first-to-market solution which involved a proprietary code-based technique, allowing the elegant motion setpiece to be deployed across all digital and mobile platforms.

The Results

The culmination of all marketing efforts came to fruition when 20 million viewers watched the premiere on linear and digital platforms — the highest-rated scripted series in 2016 to date amongst adults 18-49*.