Tuesday, December 12, 2017

People on the Move

  • Tuesday, Sep. 5, 2017
Sweeney-McDonald becomes managing director of Louisiana International Film Festival
Peggy Sweeney-McDonald
BATON ROUGE, Louisiana -- 

Peggy Sweeney-McDonald has been named managing director of the Louisiana International Film Festival. She recently moved back to her hometown of Baton Rouge after living in Los Angeles for 18 years.

Sweeney-McDonald was the owner of Superstar Events-L.A., a meeting and event company producing memorable red carpet, non-profit and corporate events across the country. She is the creator of Meanwhile, Back at Café Du Monde... Life Stories About Food, the hit festive live food monologue show and the author of the best-selling coffee table book by Pelican Publishing. She has been a presenter at The Louisiana Book Festival, The Faulkner Society Words & Music Conference, The California Culinary Historians, The Louisiana Restaurant Association, Women of Infinite Possibilities, Passions of the Palate and the Chili Pepper Extravaganza. 

Sweeney-McDonald is a member of Screen Actors Guild and has worked in film, television and commercials. She has written two Louisiana based television pilots and one is a semi-finalist in Randy Becker’s NextTV Entertainment Screenwriting Contest.

  • Friday, Sep. 1, 2017
John Berkley to become Cast & Crew president, effective Sept. 5
John Berkley
BURBANK, Calif. -- 

Cast & Crew, provider of technology-enabled payroll, accounting and production management solutions to the entertainment industry, has appointed John Berkley as president, effective September 5.  In this newly formed role, Berkley will report to CEO Eric Belcher and be responsible for driving Cast & Crew’s growth strategy and the evolution of its product portfolio, overseeing the functions of Product, Marketing, Program Management, Corporate Development & Strategy and the Final Draft business unit.
 
Berkley has more than 20 years of experience in leadership roles at prominent software and technology companies.  As a member of the senior executive team at payment technology innovator Mercury, he led product, go-to-market, operations and program management during a period when that company achieved substantial growth and industry thought leadership.  Prior to Mercury, he was sr. VP of product at Responsys, where he played a central role in leading the company through its IPO and entrance into multiple new markets.  Berkley has also been a CEO, executive and advisor at a number of high-profile internet and software startups.  As an operating executive at Silver Lake (Cast & Crew’s lead investor), Berkley has been working on site at Cast & Crew for nearly a year, coordinating the company’s go-to-market strategies for its digital products, among other responsibilities.

Belcher said,  “I’ve known John for several years, and worked closely with him at Cast & Crew this year, so I know he will be a terrific addition to our executive team.”

Berkley shared, “I am so excited to be joining the company at this moment in its growth. We have gone through significant strategic, operational and business-scope changes over the past few years--all of which have set the stage for the company we are becoming.  Most importantly, I look forward to working with Cast & Crew’s exceptional employees and clients, as we help bring to life the digital future of the entertainment industry.”

  • Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017
Brian Butcher named head of production at King and Country
Brian Butcher
SANTA MONICA, Calif. -- 

King and Country, a full-service, design-centric production company, has hired veteran producer Brian Butcher as its head of production. Butcher is working closely with partner/EP Jerry Torgerson, to build the studio’s roster of talent and strengthen relationships with new and existing clients. With more than 15 years experience managing integrated production through design, animation and live action, Butcher has collaborated with agencies, brands, networks, gaming studios and more. 

Most recently, Butcher was an independent producer at Psyop, where he produced campaigns for Target, Samsung, Chobani, Aldi, and a Super Bowl spot for Toyota’s hydrogen car, the Mirai. 

Prior to Psyop, Butcher held roles as executive producer at L.A. boutique design shop Iron Claw, and sr. producer at bicoastal Imaginary Forces. During this time, Butcher collaborated with brands and networks including Nike, Ram Trucks, Sapporo, Powerade, AT&T, Yoplait, Propel, Florida’s Natural, Sony PlayStation, EA Sports, HBO, ABC, NBC, ESPN, History, SKY and FX. He has earned multiple awards including an Emmy nomination, working on campaigns and title sequences for the big and small screen. 

  • Wednesday, Aug. 30, 2017
Worthington, Vuyovich join Young & Laramore
John Worthington
INDIANAPOLIS -- 

Ad agency Young & Laramore has brought John Worthington and Daniel Vuyovich on board as art director and sr. designer, respectively.

Worthington was previously in grad school at VCU Brandcenter. He will report to creative directors Bryan Judkins and Trevor Williams.

Prior to joining Young & Laramore, Vuyovich was a sr. designer at SK+G working on Budweiser, Waste Management, Baha Mar and Borgata Hotel & Casino. At Young & Laramore, he will report to Zac Neulieb, associate design director, and work on clients including Louisville Slugger, Farm Bureau Insurance, Indianapolis Museum Of Art, Trane and High & Mighty.

  • Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017
Brandon Tapp named EP for Lucky 21
Brandon Tapp
AUSTIN, Texas -- 

Production company Lucky 21 has added executive producer Brandon Tapp. He will be based out of Camp Lucky, Lucky 21’s new Austin office.

“Brandon is woven in fabric of the Austin community so this appointment feels full circle,” said Lucky 21 EP/partner John Gilliland. “We have worked together for more than a decade so not only do we have a shorthand, but we have been fortunate to see the work Brandon has developed through the years. His leadership is important to the company as we move to better serve our clients as creative partners.”  

Tapp has a deep history and multifaceted experience in film and entertainment, starting as a student of cinema while at the University of Texas. Tapp spent his early years in Los Angeles touring as a drummer for an indie-rock band before transitioning back into film working on features “The Return” and “Infamous” as well as television series “Friday Night Lights” and A&E’s “Rollergirls.”

Delving into commercial production, Tapp found a passion in short-form and worked his way up from production assistant to production manager and line producer. Over the years, he has produced spots for brands GMC, AT&T, Walmart, 7-Eleven, McDonald’s, Blue Cross Blue Shield, RAM Trucks, and Valero. In addition to live action, Tapp simultaneously produces for music houses and performs/co-produces musical compositions for national commercial spots including Google, John Deere, Tide, Toyota, Southwest Airlines and Nissan.

Tapp’s knowledge runs the gamut and his stewardship of long and short form narrative work made him the right fit to be at the helm of Lucky 21’s Austin expansion.

“There is a big town/small community in Austin that has always kept me here, no matter where projects have taken me,” said Tapp. “I look forward to representing Lucky 21’s talent and carrying forth the ingenuity rooted in Austin.”

Featuring six bungalows, Camp Lucky was inspired by the original 1930s’ residences flanking Austin’s iconic South Congress neighborhood. Originally created to foster a thriving work environment and strong community, this spirit is re-ignited in Camp Lucky--a creative community of storytellers, artists, filmmakers, and the headquarters for Lucky 21’s Austin office.

  • Monday, Aug. 28, 2017
Olivier Koelemij named 1st managing director of MediaMonks L.A. 
Olivier Koelemij
VENICE, Calif. -- 

MediaMonks has named Olivier Koelemij to serve in the new role of managing director for the global production company’s U.S. West Coast operation. Previously executive producer of MediaMonks L.A., Koelemij was responsible for founding the Los Angeles office in 2014 and its successful acquisition and merger with Stopp LA, growing the West Coast base to 26 Monk staffers with eight nationalities. 

MediaMonks Los Angeles works with leading brands and agencies including Uber, Google, Wieden + Kennedy and 72 & Sunny. In 2017 alone, the production company was behind work such as Old Spice’s robotic “S.Q.U.I.D” live gaming experience on Twitch, the KFC Zinger space flight experiment, Cannes pick “Quest to LEGOLAND” and band Real Estate’s “Stained Glass” interactive music video.

Koelemij was also a key driver behind MediaMonks Los Angeles’ move to its current “flagship store” on Abbot Kinney Blvd in Venice Beach. Koelemij’s new role is effective immediately, as he continues to grow U.S. operations alongside MediaMonks New York managing director Jason Prohaska under co-founder and COO Wesley ter Haar.

  • Friday, Aug. 25, 2017
Gianfrancesco named EP at MindsEye
Attilio Gianfrancesco
LONDON -- 

Attilio Gianfrancesco has been appointed executive producer at MindsEye, a commercial and film production company in London. He will work closely with managing director Hughie Phillips, director/EP Charlie Phillips and head of production Max Yeoman.

Gianfrancesco brings 10-plus years of experience to his new roost, having previously served at such roosts as Hotspur&Argyle and Great Guns.

MindsEye produces commercials, music videos and short films while maintaining a growing film and TV development arm.

  • Friday, Aug. 25, 2017
Alkemy X hires Katharine Starsinic, Jay Halbert
Katharine Starsinic
PHILADELPHIA & NEW YORK -- 

Creative content company Alkemy X has added Katharine Starsinic as director of client services & operations, and Jay Halbert as SVP of finance to its management team. Starsinic is tasked with increasing the company’s visibility and working with brand and advertiser clients while Halbert will lead all aspects of its financial functions.
 
Starsinic was most recently with Comcast, where she served as director of marketing & communications, dedicating five years to building the B2B brand and developing the marketing programs for Comcast Business. She was involved in planning and executing a full range of marketing efforts, including new product launches, sponsorships and demand generation campaigns.
 
Prior to Comcast, Starsinic spent 10 years as an account director at Wunderman Advertising in New York City. There, she led integrated and direct teams for the agency’s marquee clients, such as Citi, AT&T, Microsoft, HP and Pfizer.  
 
Halbert was most recently SVP of a manufacturing company, and prior to that was president/owner of a laser rental and sales company, both based in the Philadelphia region. Before that, he spent nearly a decade as chief financial officer for a series of companies in the sports, media and entertainment business, including Comcast Spectacor, which owned the Philadelphia Flyers, the Philadelphia 76ers, the Wells Fargo Center, and six other complementary businesses. 
 
After earning his accounting degree from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and his law degree from New York University School of Law, Halbert practiced in the corporate law department at the New York-based international law firm of Sullivan & Cromwell before leaving for the business world. He then went to work with PricewaterhouseCoopers Securities as an associate investment banker, before taking a position as CFO and principal of New Spring Capital, a venture capital fund based in the Mid-Atlantic Region.

  • Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017
Framestore names Josh King sr. VFX producer in advertising division
Josh King
LONDON -- 

Framestore has appointed Josh King as sr. VFX producer within the company’s advertising division. He brings significant industry experience to the role, which will see him manage the increasingly sophisticated VFX of major commercials at Framestore, working with leading directorial and artistic talent.

King started his career at Rushes, rising the ranks to sr. producer before moving on to spend time at MPC. He has overseen campaigns which have gained huge public and industry recognition, including those for Three, Cravendale and Harvey Nichols, amassing an impressive portfolio of VFX challenges--moonwalking ponies inclusive--along the way.

King will work under department head Helen Hughes, recently promoted to head of advertising, a newly formed role at the company.

  • Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017
Matthieu de Lesseux joins Havas Group in newly created role
Matthieu de Lesseux
PARIS -- 

Matthieu de Lesseux has been appointed to the newly created role of CEO of Creative Activities for Havas Paris, Les Gaulois, Fullsix France and Havas Digital Factory. Scheduled to come aboard at the beginning of September, he will help accelerate the digital transformation of Havas Group’s clients in France and serve as a member of Havas Village France’s executive committee, chaired by Raphaël de Andreis. 

After having been a successful digital entrepreneur and founding digital agency Duke, de Lesseux became president of Razorfish France. He then joined the Omnicom Group as co-president of DDB Paris and DDB France Group where he led digital transformation and won leading brands including McDonald’s and Volkswagen.

“I have closely followed Matthieu’s impressive career for years,” said de Andreis. “He is one of the pioneers of digital transformation in France. He is pragmatic and always one step ahead. He was the first to understand that mobile created a connection with consumers that goes beyond communication and actually drives sales. Matthieu is also a great manager who is passionate about what he does and who values creative ideas above everything else.”

“I am proud, excited yet humbled to be joining the Havas Village France,” said de Lesseux. “The excellence of its agencies and teams, the merging of creative and media, the agility necessary to transform our clients’ business, the integration of technology and data and the joining of Havas and Vivendi are just some of the assets that mean we have the best offering on the market.”