The Olympus Pen E-P1 is a beautiful Micro Four Thirds tribute the famous Pen half-frame SLR of the 1960s, so it's only appropriate that the most distinctive part of their advertising campaign is, well, inspired by a previous work.
Above, you see Olympus' "The PEN Story," a charming collection of some 9600 prints strung together in stop motion animation. From the video's YouTube description:
This is the PEN Story in stop motion. We shot 60.000 pictures, developed 9.600 prints and shot over 1.800 pictures again. No post production! Thanks to all the stop motion artists who inspired us. We hope you enjoy :-) Song & Lyrics by Johannes Stankowski
Produced and Arranged by Michael Kadelbach.
Thanks all around! Thanks for everyone! Now watch this, posted months before the E-P1 was even announced:
That's "Stop motion with wolf and pig," a video made by this Japanese fellow. The aesthetic similarities are obvious, but forgivable. The conceptual similarities? Not so much. Our tipster:
From the beginning with opening envelope, to the stairs, trains, swimming, the whole thing is a complete rip off. Kind of crosses the line between inspiration and theft. Unless they hired him to do it, which seems unlikely.
That Olympus didn't directly thank Mr. Wolf 'n Pig doesn't take away from the fact that their video is equally—if not more—technically impressive than the one that inspired it, but it couldn't hurt to at least acknowledge the poor kid's work a little more directly. [Thanks, Nick B! <— (see, that wasn't so bad!)]