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Considered by many critics as one of the best novels of the 20th century, Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov was chosen to be the 3rd edition in Google Russia’s series of cultural interactive readings

We were brought on board to illustrate, animate, design and build a unique and engaging experience that immerses the user in the world of the narrative. A surreal journey where users could chat to key characters and be transported to iconic scenes from the book. The experience was complete with the user given the opportunity to audition to take part in a 360 live streaming event of the full novel by uploading a video of their interpretation on a extract from the novel.

So no matter where in the world you are, you could watch or even be part of the magic of Master and Margarita.

  • Client Google Russia
  • Project Master and Margarita, I Was There
Zeitgeist Tablet
Intelligent chat bot

A key part of the experience is an interactive chat with two of the book’s main characters — the demons, Behemoth and Koroviev. We structured a smart logic path, which based on their answers to a series of questions, will ‘teleports’ users into the heart of the most appropriate scene, with added surprise elements to reflect the mischievous nature of the demons. For example, naughtiness on the user's part, such as arguing with the demons and answering anything other than yes or no to their questions, will land you in the iconic Satan’s Ball scene, alongside a host of other demons and characters of questionable and ill repute.

Bringing 7 iconic scenes to life

Each of the seven famous scenes were concepted, illustrated, and built up layer by layer. This included sound effects, character voiceovers, front-end animation and gyroscopic movement to bring them to life in a way that offered a fresh and modern perspective, but also stayed faithful to the original text.

Each scene was divided into foreground, midground, and background elements to create a sense of depth. Attention to detail was vital so everything from the architecture to the hair-styles was researched, sketched, and honed. We also used tricks such as blurring, parallax and awesome animation to further elevate each scene and tell more of the story.

Master and Margarita Facebook post

There were over half a million visitors to the site in the first 6 weeks, spending an average of 2.10 minutes on the website. The site also generated a buzz across the web and social media, both within Russia and beyond, with the scenes being shared nearly 20,000 times.

Launch the site
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