VIDEO: Stop-motion artist recreates Kawhi Leonard’s famous buzzer-beater

It took Jared Jacobs about 40 hours to make the video, on top of the research

A scene from a viral stop-motion video of Kawhi Leonard’s buzzer-beater moment created by Jared Jacobs. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Jared Jacobs)

A scene from a viral stop-motion video of Kawhi Leonard’s buzzer-beater moment created by Jared Jacobs. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Jared Jacobs)

Calgary-raised stop-motion animator Jared Jacobs is a big Toronto Raptors fan and wants star player Kawhi Leonard to stay with the NBA Championship team.

So to help convince the soon-to-be free agent, Jacobs has turned to his own area of expertise: Lego.

In a stop-motion video that’s gone viral, Jacobs used the toy pieces to meticulously recreate Leonard’s famous buzzer-beater moment against Philadelphia in Game 7 of the second round.

“It was one of those things where I was like, ‘Maybe this will make a difference in Kawhi picking Toronto, like the plant guy,’” Jacobs said Tuesday in a phone interview from his home in Boise, Idaho.

Jacobs was referring to a Raptors fan who became an Internet sensation for carrying an uprooted large plant in the streets of Toronto after the championship win, telling Global News it was “a housewarming gift for Kawhi … a Kawhactus.”

“The Internet is a weird place, so every little bit helps and that was my contribution,” said Jacobs, 41.

Jacobs said he started using Lego in his stop-motion work about five years ago after playing around with his nephews’ pieces in his mother-in-law’s basement during Thanksgiving.

He first used the interlocking plastic bricks and figurines to recreate a scene from the series “Breaking Bad” for his Instagram account, which he says got attention from some of the actors on the show.

Jacobs made more Lego videos and gained so much buzz, he quit his job to focus exclusively on them as a freelancer, landing contracts with companies including Bleacher Report, the Golf Channel, and the NHL Network.

He said he wanted to recreate the Leonard buzzer-beater scene earlier but felt it was a conflict of interest because he was doing work for the Golden State Warriors during the Finals.

He isn’t sponsored by Lego (although he’d like to be) and has to custom-make many pieces.

For the buzzer-beater project, his graphic-designer friend created the jerseys.

“With Kawhi’s hair I just had to use a nail file to make it look like it was cornrows, because Lego doesn’t make cornrows,” Jacobs said.

“I ruined a couple of my hair pieces trying to get it to look just right.”

READ MORE: Raptors playoff run ‘bittersweet’ for former Vancouver Grizzlies owner

The buzzer-beater video took about 40 hours to make, not including the research he put into it.

The end where the crowd jumped up and down raising their hands was “painstakingly long,” he said, requiring him to move dozens of little people at the same time each frame.

Leonard’s shot bounced four times, but Jacobs had to take a bounce out in order to properly link the sound up with the visuals.

The team has posted it on its Instagram and Twitter pages.

“This one is cool just because it’s something that has blown up in Canada, which is my homeland,” he said. “It’s just cool to see all the Canadians come out of the woodwork and appreciate my work. That special to me.”

Victoria Ahearn, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

Proposed homeless shelter; In response to Keystone cancellation; Progressives

Moir Park in Cranbrook. Photo courtesy Google.
Local organizations partnering for trail project around Moir Park

A partnership of local organizations is hoping to build a community trail… Continue reading

Castlegar Sculpturewalk 2020 – 10 Year Anniversary Sand Sculpture. (Submitted/CBT)
CBT arts and culture grant program now accepting applications

Apply through the Kootenay Columbia Cultural Alliance

Millie the cat showed up at the East Kootenay SPCA branch seemingly on her own accord. She now needs $2000 worth of treatment. (BC SPCA file)
East Kootenay SPCA raising funds for senior cat found outside branch

SPCA hopes to raise $2,000 for surgery, medication and care of Millie the cat

City council is requesting a meeting with a provincial cabinet minister to ask the province to step in and manage urban deer in Cranbrook. Barry Coulter file photo.
City of Cranbrook asks province to manage urban deer

The City of Cranbrook is requesting a meeting with a provincial cabinet… Continue reading

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respect for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Kobe Bryant’s presence remains strong a year after his death

Tuesday marks the grim anniversary of the crash that took their lives

Surrey RCMP are investigating after a pedestrian was struck and killed at 183 Street and Highway 10 Friday night. (File photo)
Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The Brucejack mine is 65 km north of Stewart in northwestern B.C. (Pretivm Photo)
B.C. mine executives see bright gleam in post-COVID future

Low carbon drives demand for copper, steelmaking coal

In this Dec. 18, 2020 photo, pipes to be used for the Keystone XL pipeline are stored in a field near Dorchester, Neb.  THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Chris Machian /Omaha World-Herald via AP
Canadians divided over Keystone pipeline, despite U.S. president’s permit pullback

Two-thirds of Canadians think Biden’s decision was a “bad thing” for Alberta

Most Read