Unsigned: Tobias Ross-Southall

March 15, 2017 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

This director never stops experimenting and learning.

Tobias Ross-Southall was always messing around with a mini DV camera in school. He enjoyed experimenting with recording techniques. One day while cycling down a busy street at night, one handed whilst filming, he had the epiphany that this was what he wanted to do with his life.

A lot of his mates were in bands and he had access to a camera, so began shooting stuff for their music videos. His first music video was shot and edited in one night in order to get it live for the next day as the band at the time were due to go on a BBC show. It got over a million views on YouTube – not a bad start.

Since then he’s kept shooting, experimenting and learning. He’s created films for Coca-Cola, New Balance, Nike, Universal, Paddy Power, Vivienne Westwood and The Orient-Express, among others. He was nominated in the Best New Director category at the UK Music Video Awards and in 2010 co-directed Perfecting Fee, which won the Smoke & Mirrors 48 Hour Film Competition.

One particularly ambitious project was Eleanor, starring Ruth Wilson – a three-screen immersive installation, which exists both as an exhibition piece and a conventional short film.

He’s interested in pursuing more art installation-style work in the future and is also in the process of developing a live-action / animation feature film.

Watch some of his work here:

Signed: Rodrigo Garcia Saiz

February 14, 2017 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

MindsEye's newest signing is a disciple of Alejandro Iñárritu who's been making films since he was tiny.

Rodrigo had an early start in filmmaking. Thanks to his father’s career in photography, he had a camera in his hands from an early age. He studied film at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, in the University Center for Film Studies CUEC; later, he studied at the New York University NYU, and San Antonio de los Baños, Cuba, so he’s got a solid education.

He began his film career working at Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s production company as a commercial AD, before forming his own Mexico City production company, Central Films.

His ability to seamlessly switch from comedy to emotional storytelling is testament to the perfect, nuanced performances he gets from his cast. And this has been recognised with him picking up Cannes Lions for five consecutive years. Most recently, in 2016, his spot for Tecate beer - Domestic Violence won Rodrigo a silver Lion.

Joining MindsEye marks Rodrigo’s first representation in the UK.

Watch some of his work here:

Unsigned: Broken Antenna

January 30, 2017 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Skills honed in the honourable tradition of making music videos for mates.

Myles McAuliffe and Gustav Newby (AKA Broken Antenna) grew up in Camberwell, loving films and hip-hop, with big dreams of working in Blockbuster Video. Eventually these interests led them to start working on feature films, such as Skyfall and Made in Dagenham, doing lock offs with the locations department. Undeterred by on-set boredom they went to Bath Spa university together to study film.

For their final project at university they made a documentary called Lo-Down In London, about the London chapter of a New York gang called the Lo-Lifes who only wear Ralph Lauren. After graduation they moved home to London and tried to ship their film around to see where it could take them, traipsing around Soho and Shoreditch with a wad of CVs trying to get jobs in film. They managed to get a meeting at Mother London where Charlie Inman & Anthony Austin took them under their wing, and started to get them in to work on pitch documentaries, edit mood films and shoot event films.

Soon they started treating on music videos. The first one they won, the artist never showed up for the shoot, so they had a studio and cameras ready with nothing to film (sound familiar?). They phoned around their friends that rapped to see if any of them wanted to do a video and ended up making Cruger - V.I.G. That was the start of a new era for them, making music videos for their friends and it’s allowed them to build quite a reel.

One of their videos was featured on brown cardigan (Japadollar – So Fine), they’ve been nominated for two UKMVAs (Newham Generals – Scars and Dead Players - Drenching), a Berlin MVA (Dark Sky - Silent Fall), and recently got a video on Channel 4’s Random Acts that’s even been written up in OK Magazine (Swet Shop Boys - Zayn Malik). They’ve made a few commercials along the way, too.

They’re on a strong trajectory, so it’ll be interesting to see what they achieve once they get the budgets they need to realise their ideas.

Watch some of their work here:

Signed: Dorian & Daniel

January 19, 2017 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

The most hyped young directors in the advertising consciousness have found a home.

You’ve probably seen Dorian & Daniel’s spec ad for Johnnie Walker. Half of the internet seemed to when it went viral back in December 2015. Dear Brother, their moving story about two brothers touched enough people with its $9,000 budget to spark conversation amongst the normies, not just advertising geeks. Most proper ads can’t manage that.

Dorian Lebherz and Daniel Titz grew up on opposite ends of Germany. Daniel is from a small town in the north and Dorian from a small town in the south, but when the pair met at Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg they discovered that their talents complemented one another.

Now they’ve signed to Academy and A+. We’re surprised they weren’t snapped up quicker to be honest, but they’ve done well to land themselves a spot on one of the most talent-packed rosters in London. The company has a pedigree when it comes to developing directors, so we’ll watch their development with interest.

Watch some of their work here:

Signed: Tobias Perse

November 20, 2016 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Once Hunter S. Thompson's editor, now a commercials director.

Growing up, Tobias Perse was always moving around America, ever the new kid at school. With a travelling newspaper journalist for a mother, he was also always wordy. His nose was constantly in a book – training that paid off when he beat his Grandma at Scrabble for the first time aged 11. Quite a feat considering she was ranked Third Place Amateur Regional Scrabble Champion in the women’s over-60 category.

After a few brushes with authorities, a few more moves and a lot more reading, sort-of grown-up Tobias landed in New York City, where he felt truly at home for the first time. A few unglamorous jobs later he ended up writing for Rolling Stone alongside some of the most notable wordsmiths in the world, including Hunter S. Thompson, who he ended up editing for – not as enviable a position as it may look on paper.

But while his career as a journalist was burgeoning, he couldn’t shake the grip of his love for movies, and always wondered what it would be like to make one. So he took a step towards that world, first going freelance and writing for TV, then dabbling in editing, corporate films, screenplays. Eventually he tried directing, first on a documentary which failed and then on one which went to Sundance and won awards.

Since then he’s been making TVCs and online films, and not badly either. Now he’s got himself onto Nice Shirt Films’ roster. We think what he does there will be worth your attention.

Watch some of his work here:

Unsigned: The Porsche Award 2016

November 18, 2016 / Signed/Unsigned

By Alex Reeves

The best student-made spec ads of the year.

Last night London celebrated some of the brightest directing talents about to enter our industry. Brought to you by Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg, the National Film and Television School and Porsche AG, the 2016 Porsche International Student Advertising Film Award showcased the best in emerging advertising directors from around the world. The winning films were selected from hundreds of entries by this year’s jury, Oscar-winning British director Sir Alan Parker CBE, Katie Keith (Rattling Stick), Patrick Cahill (adam&eveDDB), Lyndy Stout (1.4) and Olivia Atkins (shots).

Established in 2004 by the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg with Porsche AG as the main sponsor, this is the first time the award has come to London, where NFTS is based. The timing is interesting for NFTS, as this year they launched their new Diploma in Directing Commercials and Promos.

Entries were divided into two categories – Automobile (because Porsche is the main sponsor) and the Classical category for everything else. They were all speculative commercials made purely for practice and to demonstrate talent, but the quality on display was impressive.

First, second and third prizes were awarded to winners in each category last night.

Here are all the winning and shortlisted films:

CLASSICAL CATEGORY

First Prize

Title: Kill The Noise
Brand: Ohropax
Director: Christian Schilling
School: Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg
Country: Germany

 

Second Prize

Title: Dear Brother
Brand: Johnnie Walker
Directors: Dorian Lebherz, Daniel Titz
School: Filmakademie Baden Wuerttemberg
Country: Germany

 

Third Prize

Title: How New York Eats
Brand: Seamless
Director: Germain Gulick
School: New York University
Country: USA

 

Shortlisted

Title: Moonjourney
Brand: Prospects for Young Refugees
Director: Chiara Grabmayr
School: University of Television and Film Munich
Country: Germany

 

Shortlisted

Title: Limits Like Fears
Brand: Jordan
Director: John Ryan Johnson
School: New York University
Country: USA

 

 

AUTOMOBILE CATEGORY

First Prize

Title: Hungry for History
Brand: Mercedes-Benz
Director: Florian Greth
School: Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg
Country: Germany

 

Second Prize

Title: The Light
Brand: BMW
Director: Minh Doung
School: University of Television and Film Munich
Country: Germany

 

Third Prize

Title: Integration
Brand: Opel
Director: David Helmut
School: Macromedia University Munich
Country: Germany

 

Shortlisted

Title: Cardboard Dreams
Brand: Ferrari
Director: Spencer Young
School: National Film and Television School
Country: United Kingdom

 

Shortlisted

Title: The Mission
Brand: Volkswagen
Director: Alexander Blome
School: University of Applied Science Karlsruhe
Country: Germany

Signed: Jodeb

October 27, 2016 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

Prettybird have just signed an effortless storyteller with an eye for the exotic.

Jonathan Desbiens, better known by the pseudonym Jodeb, is a Canadian filmmaker hailing from the small town of Shawinigan, Quebec. He started doing his own VFX at 12 years old, while making skateboard films with his friends. This natural passion for filmmaking saw him continuing to helm short films and music videos through his teens. Jodeb later opted to tackle fine arts at the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières to enrich his style rather than go to film school. It is within this parallel—the balance of simultaneously studying classical art history, literature, painting, sculpture, and glasswork while continuing to hone his self-taught skill for directing, editing, colours and visual effects—that Jodeb developed his creative voice.

Jodeb has spearheaded music videos for the likes of award-winning artists Skrillex, Imagine Dragons, Swedish House Mafia, the Weeknd, Cypress Hill, Zedd, Porter Robinson, Deftones, Tinashe, Halsey and A$AP Rocky. A self-proclaimed “dreamer,” he often channels a love for exotic locations and cultures in his works.

Jodeb displays his flare for cinematography and character development in his long-form music videos for Point Point’s Life In Grey and the 21-minute promo for Skrillex titled Still in the Cage.

Since garnering the attention of studio executives (in particular for his Skrillex and Point Point productions), Jodeb has begun developing his first feature film.

Watch some of his work here:

Unsigned: Christopher Arcella

October 11, 2016 / Signed/Unsigned

By The Beak Street Bugle

A fiercely ambitious ex-designer from Steel City who likes to experiment.

Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Christopher Arcella made some of his early forays into film under the watchful eye of esteemed filmmaker Jim Jarmusch, while he worked part time at his office.

With a background in product and furniture design and a Bachelor’s Degree from the Virginia Tech College of Architecture, his interests have gradually shifted away from design and towards writing and directing. His first jobs saw him designing all sorts of things for a wide range of clients, from furniture to digital experiences. He even ran his own interaction design studio, RUNROBOTS, for a while.

To date he’s directed over 40 short films and music videos as well as one feature. Due to financial constraints he's shot it all himself. He recently started a feature film production company with his high school friend Mike Uy called Film Club 13 (or FC13). Their first project is a science fiction film titled Deviations, about a society that has waived its right to privacy. He’s gone deep into research and development, even writing a novel to supplement the script and help the actors develop their characters.

Keen to apply his filmmaking talents to more commercial ends, Christopher is seeking representation. It’ll be worth watching where he heads next.

Watch some of his work here: