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'Tonight Show' opening intro video created by Portland stop motion animator

Lawrence Becker says it took him around 70 hours and a couple sleepless nights to finish the 22-second video.

PORTLAND, Ore. — It was early April and Lawrence Becker was busy working on his latest project.

"I was kind of busy at the time. I just had finished a music video that just came out this weekend as well," Becker said from his home in Portland.

"It was kind of like an offer I couldn't refuse. I was like, 'Well it's the Tonight Show. I have to do that.' At first I was like, 'I don't think I have time. I'm too busy,' but then when they said what it was I was like, 'OK, I'm not gonna pass that up. I'll do what I have to.'"

He worked with Cartuna, an animation studio in New York for the right look. The studio and The Tonight Show had the general idea of having Jimmy Fallon wake up in his home and run through his day; the rest was left to Becker.

"I kind of added my own little thing to it. I thought of a few transitions that would be fun, the shower. The way things transitioned were kind of my ideas," he said.

Becker said there are only a few edits in the video and you'd have to look very closely to try and find them. The 22-second video debuted during The Tonight Show's April 27 show, which was taped from Jimmy Fallon's house.

The short video took him around 70 hours to create and involved a few sleepless nights. Becker says stop motion is no easy task.

"It's pretty difficult. There's definitely a reason not too many people do it. It's hours and hours. I have a standing desk because I used to work hunched over and that wasn't good for my back and I have a standing desk, but even that, there's a lot of pain involved in stop motion I don't think people realize."

For this video, he used a frame rate of 15 frames per second. For reference, KGW shoots most video at 30 frames per second.

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"When I use felt, I actually do a lower frame rate because I kind of like the lower frame rate, so it's 15 frames per second, and in this type of situation it helps me actually get it done. If I was doing 24 frames per second, I never would've gotten that done," Becker explained.

The Tonight Show video isn't Becker's only work you may have seen.

"The felt stuff has really kind of blown up in the last year or two. The first thing I ever did with felt, funny enough, was for Portlandia," he said.

Have you been to the Moda Center for a Blazers game in the last couple years? He created the introduction videos that play on the big screen. He even caught the eye of Lizzo and created a lyric music video for her song, "Truth Hurts."

"That's what I'm known for the most I'd say. I do a lot of different styles. I do stuff with toys, I do stuff with 2D animation," Becker said.

He says all the hard work and sleepless nights are worth it.

"It's a hard job, I question my life choices sometimes! It's very rewarding when it's done. There's nothing quite like watching the end results. So it's always worth it when you get to the finish line."

You can catch The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon weeknights on KGW at 11:35pm.

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