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Film Academy Films Gorgeous

The future stars of TV production: including Ed Morris, Matt Huntley and Hanna Maria Heidrich


By Jason Stone, Editor of David Reviews

February 15, 2013 | 4 min read

Jason Stone of David Reviews looks at the future stars of the commercial production industry.

Following on from Jason Stone's look into the past, present and future of the commercial production industry, the David Reviews owner and editor highlights the directors to watch out for.

Niall O’Brien of Academy Films

Photographer Niall O’Brien gained a place on the roster at Academy Films after a recommendation from Jonathan Glazer. The young Irishman had been tasked with providing Glazer with some stills work for his latest feature film and the revered ads director was so impressed with O’Brien’s potential that he urged his company to sign him up immediately. George Floyd is already impressed: “These days, the ability to speak with confidence and eloquence in a meeting is paramount. Niall has pitched on two scripts... and won them both. That’s a hell of a hit rate for any director, let alone afirst timer.”

Hanna Maria Heidrich of Gorgeous

Hanna Maria Heidrich is a graduate of the renowned Filmacademy Baden-Württemburg for Directing and she’s also studied theatre directing at Central Saint Martins. In 2009 she won a scholarship at the UCLA Film Academy. Heidrich has already put all this learning to good effect, winning a string of international awards for her commercials and shorts. Paul Rothwell of Gorgeous expects great things from his latest signing: “Very very rarely do you see a new directors reel that has you excited for days and stays with you. Hanna Maria’s student work was absolutely mesmerising.”

Jesper Ericstam of Nice Shirt Films

Jesper Ericstam is extremely well established in Sweden where he began his creative career with exhibitions of his own furniture, paintings and photos in his hometown of Falsterbo. After buying a camera and a Ford LTD ’73 he drove all over the US shooting a documentary called Elvis. Returning home destitute, he began working on commercials so he could afford to edit Elvis. Within a few years he established himself as a formidable talent and continues to make wonderful commercials both in Sweden and, occasionally, the UK. With a new series of Swedish commercials for IKEA garnering international attention, he’s likely to be in demand in 2013.

Ed Morris of Rattling Stick

Ed Morris’s move into directing follows an extensive and impressive career in some of London’s top advertising agencies, leading to his being described as one of the best creatives of his generation. A man of many talents, Ed is also an exhibited artist, musician, photographer and is currently president of the Creative Circle of Great Britain. After his years working as a creative, Morris is perfectly positioned to become a director and has already popped his cherry – in 2010, he directed an AIDS awareness spot for MTV’s Staying Alive campaign which went on to win a Diploma at the British Arrows Awards.

Mustapha Kseibati of Another Film Company

Mustapha Kseibati is a promising young fi lmmaker with an uncanny ear for the street patois of modern day London. Not only has this given him the ability to construct short films with an unusually intense authenticity, it suggests he’ll be able to create commercials that speak to the youthful demographic that advertising most wants to reach. Kseibati is excited about the possibilities offered by television advertising and is humble enough to acknowledge that he still has much to learn but judging from the confidence of his short films, he’s more than ready to make his mark in any discipline of filmmaking.

Matt Huntley of Outsider

Matt Huntley’s work stands out for its original storytelling. He tells engaging and good-looking stories with charm and wit. After studying graphic design at Camberwell and Brighton Schools ofArt, Matt began his career working as an assistant art director on short films and music promos. A commission to write and direct the comedy short Trimming the Fat for BBC Films brought him to the attention of Outsider, where he developed and directed a series of short documentary films for Vodafone, taking him around Europe and Africa. Matt’s determination, hard work and talent has led to a recent run of ads for Budweiser, Halfords, British Gas, The Sun, Samsung and Barclays

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