Saturday, January 19, 2019

People on the Move

  • Thursday, Jan. 17, 2019
Beardsley named chief production officer at Swift; Chase promoted to CSO
Marni Beardsley
PORTLAND, Ore. -- 

Marni Beardsley has joined creative agency Swift as chief production officer. She will oversee studio and operational production across all projects. Beardsley comes to Swift after a 25-year run at Wieden+Kennedy, where she most recently was director of integrated art/content production, supporting the global W+K network.

Additionally Swift has promoted Meredith Chase to chief strategy officer. Chase joined Swift in 2015 as VP of strategic planning. She has since built a world-class strategy team that originates smart integrated marketing solutions for clients and robust inspiration for creatives; and led intensive primary research projects to inform brand and business strategy for Swift’s roster of global brands. Chase will continue to lead on business development efforts and direct large primary research projects.

Previously, Chase was founder and principal of the strategic marketing firm Guidance Counsel, which partnered with Under Armour to help reposition its women’s business and developed the strategy that drove the company’s “I Will What I Want” campaign which won the Jay Chiat Grand Prix for Strategic Excellence, 11 Cannes Lions including Cyber Grand Prix, Effie Gold, four One Show Golds and 2014 Marketer of the Year.

Meanwhile during Beardsley’s last 17 years at W+K, she led the integrated art production team. While there, she was instrumental in transforming the range of studio expertise from a focus on still photography and illustration to an expanded skill set that included film, animation, events, experiential and activations. Her client list at W+K included Nike, Shiseido, Target, Levi’s, Samsung, Verizon, Coca-Cola, P&G, Chrysler/Fiat and Delta Airlines.

Beyond the award-winning work she’s overseen for the past two decades, Beardsley is a direct conduit to an international creative community, having forged long-standing relationships with world renowned artists, photographers and directors.

  • Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019
Glen Freyer joins Alkemy X as SVP, TV & digital content
Glen Freyer
NEW YORK -- 

Alkemy X has added veteran producer and development executive Glen Freyer as sr. VP TV & digital content. Freyer will work alongside EVP TV & digital content, Andy Singer, atop the company’s rapidly expanding Originals division. Freyer will develop scripted and unscripted content for both linear and digital platforms, including broadcast, streaming, web and branded. Freyer joins a team that is already leveraging Alkemy X’s success in original content and VFX into the emerging fields of web series and branded entertainment.

Freyer has held senior roles with Loud TV, Bobby Flay’s Rock Shrimp Productions, Atlas Media and TruTV/Court TV. He has been consulting with Alkemy X for several months and has already played a key role developing and producing recent projects for Google, Discovery Networks and other clients. With 20 years in the industry, Freyer has personally executive produced or produced more than 800 episodes of network television and created and/or sold an additional 350 episodes. His credits include the hit Travel Channel series Hotel Impossible and Investigation Discovery’s Stalked: Someone’s Watching.

Alkemy X’s Originals division produced the long-running Food Network series Restaurant: Impossible, Velocity’s Unique Rides and Fuse’s recent The 212.  Alkemy X is currently producing a project for TLC slated to debut in 2019 and is actively developing new series for Discovery, Food Network and others.

At Rock Shrimp Productions, Freyer served as EVP of development, working with celebrity chef Bobby Flay. He spent six years as SVP for development at Atlas Media and three years as the sr. buyer for Court TV/TruTV. Freyer was also a development executive and executive producer at 20th Television’s Fox Lab, and began his television career as a writer/producer on the hit reality series Blind Date. Freyer has also sold numerous screenplays over the years to Fox 2000, Icon Films and Shoreline Entertainment, among others.

  • Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019
Nonfiction Unlimited adds EP Michel Waxman
Michel Waxman
LOS ANGELES -- 

Executive producer Michel Waxman has joined Nonfiction Unlimited, creative production home to a roster of notable documentary directors working on commercial and branded projects.

Previously, Waxman was exec producer at Chelsea Pictures where she helmed the company’s L.A. office. Prior to Chelsea, Michel was an EP at Serial Pictures. Waxman’s experience includes running her own firm, MBW Represents, where she worked with Academy Films, Park Pictures, and Rattling Stick, among others. 

Nonfiction partner Loretta Jeneski said of Waxman, “She is passionate about the work and has a deep history of developing creative opportunities for the companies and directors under her watch.” 

Waxman will oversee all aspects of new business at Nonfiction. 

The addition of Waxman comes as Nonfiction moves into 2019 with a renewed commitment to consistently bring the documentary genre’s next generation of nonfiction filmmakers to commercial projects. This new generation includes such company roster directors as Bing Liu who helmed Minding the Gap, and Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin, the filmmaker behind Free Solo. Both Minding the Gap and Free Solo have been lauded on the current festival and awards show circuits.

  • Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2019
Significant Others' Betty Cameron heads West
Betty Cameron
LOS ANGELES -- 

Post/visual effects house Significant Others has added sr. VFX artist Betty Cameron to its L.A. office. 

Cameron hails from Significant Other’s New York office, where she worked as a lead artist on features including Moonlight, If Beale Street Could Talk, Hearts Beat Loud, and Gloria Bell. Other recent projects include work for Google, Facebook, L’Oreal, and The New York Times.

After graduating from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, Cameron spent six years at Absolute Post, where she worked up from compositing assistant to VFX artist. She then moved to Significant Others’ NYC office, where she spent the last four years. Cameron has a longstanding love for practical effects, and her own favorite work involves using digital wizardry to make practical effects truly seamless. In addition to her compositing work, she is also accomplished at title design and motion graphics.

Established in 2014 as the post division of Final Cut, Significant Others turns out a wide range of work spanning features, series, and commercials and branded work. 

  • Tuesday, Jan. 15, 2019
Odysseus Arms adds Caroline Sinclair, Katherine Stewart
Caroline Sinclair (l) and Katherine Stewart
SAN FRANCISCO -- 

Odysseus Arms has added two staffers: Caroline Sinclair as jr. strategist and Katherine Stewart as art director. Headed by founder and CEO Libby Brockhoff, the San Francisco agency is behind successful ongoing work for client Barefoot Wines, as well as HotelTonight, Carlo Rossi and André Champagne.

Sinclair, a native of Sweden, will manage the creative and strategic work for Carlo Rossi and André Champagne, while reporting to Brockhoff. Sinclair is joining Brockhoff’s team of ThirdEye™ researchers and strategists. ThirdEye™ is a proprietary strategic and creative method where brands’ consumers are invited into the agency to collaborate side by side with agency staff. 

Art director Stewart joins the team from Vitro in Austin, TX where she worked on Facebook, El Pollo Loco and Bonefish Grill. Prior to that, she worked for art dealer Vladimir Restoin Roitfeld in NYC.

  • Monday, Jan. 14, 2019
Chris Kiser joins Glassworks Amsterdam as EP, new business director
Chris Kiser
AMSTERDAM -- 

VFX company Glassworks has appointed Chris Kiser as executive producer and new business director for its Amsterdam office. Originally from Texas, Kiser has 15 years of industry experience in high end production, post, visual effects, CGI and design for projects in broadcast, digital, long form and emerging technologies. Having previously worked in New York, Portland and Dallas, he has overseen globally acclaimed projects as executive producer at The Mill and head of production at both Psyop and Click 3X.

Alongside work with leading creative agencies and brands, Kiser has also contributed to feature and episodic content, most recently collaborating with the Coen Brothers on their 2018 Netflix film, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.

Kiser said about his move, “Glassworks has a great reputation as creative leaders and innovators. I’m thrilled to join the team and expand our reach within the European market and beyond. With three diverse offices (Amsterdam, London, Barcelona) under one global brand, Glassworks is well positioned to support a range of needs and bring a unique creative voice to every project we touch.”

In his new role, Kiser will apply his expertise to help build on the company’s existing client relationships, expand new business developments and work alongside Glassworks’ lead artists to consistently strive for high end creative solutions.

This latest hire continues the office’s growth and expansion of its leadership team, with recent promotions of Anya Kruzmetra to chief operating officer and Kyle Obley to head of 2D.

  • Friday, Jan. 11, 2019
Kristen Bedard-Johnson joins Sanctuary Content as EP/head of sales
Kristen Bedard-Johnson (l) and Preston Lee
CULVER CITY, Calif. -- 

Sanctuary Content has added sales veteran Kristen Bedard-Johnson as executive producer and head of sales. Bedard-Johnson’s role at the Culver City-based production company will complement that of Preston Lee, EP and founder, on the West coast. 
 
Bedard-Johnson joins Sanctuary’s new Brooklyn office after two years as director of sales and management--East Coast at Smuggler. With a background in theater and over a decade in advertising at companies like Furlined and RadicalMedia, Bedard-Johnson knew she wanted to join the ranks at Sanctuary when the opportunity arose, having had her eye on their roster since the company launched in 2016. 

“Preston has such a strong reputation in the industry, and right away I saw how his vision aligned with my goals. We came together really naturally,” said Bedard-Johnson. “I’m thrilled to be able help the directors bond their artistic output with commerce, to get specific on what success looks like to them and help to build that trajectory.” 

After 36 months building the company in Culver City, Lee said now is the right time for the infusion of fresh energy and enthusiasm in Sanctuary’s new Brooklyn office. “In order for us to grow and move onto the next phase of our journey, we needed someone exactly like Kristen to come on board. The strength of two strategic minds working across both coasts is the best way to provide the strongest opportunities for our directors.”

A focus on nurturing talent isn’t the only commonality; both EPs share an excitement for the convergence of entertainment and advertising in the current media landscape. This shines through in a roster of makers who create across the very different formats of filmmaking, including advertising, film, music videos, and television. Having produced five short films to date, the company is continuing to push into long-format in all platforms.

  • Friday, Jan. 11, 2019
Electric Theatre Collective hires Lockhart, Durrance, Vlasto
Electric Theatre Collective's (l-r) Elle Lockhart, Antonia Vlasto and Polly Durrance
LONDON -- 

VFX company Electric Theatre Collective, established in London and L.A., has fortified its team with the hiring of producers Elle Lockhart, Polly Durrance and Antonia Vlasto. 

Lockhart brings a wealth of CG experience and joins from Touch Surgery where she ran the Johnson and Johnson account. Prior to that Lockhart worked at Analog as a VFX producer where she delivered three global campaigns for Nike. At Electric, she will serve as producer on Martini and Toyota.

Vlasto joins Electric working on clients such as Mercedes, Tourism Ireland and Tui. Vlasto joins from 750MPH where, over a 4-year period, she served as producer on Nike, Great Western Railway, VW and Amazon to name a few.

At Electric, Durrance serves as producer on H&M, TK Maxx and Carphone Warehouse. She joins from UNIT where she helped launched its in-house Design Collective, working with clients such as Lush, Pepsi and Thatchers Cider. Prior to UNIT Durrance was at Big Buoy where she produced work for Jaguar Land Rover, giffgaff and Redbull.
                                         
Harry Jones, Electric general manager, said: “We are thrilled to have added three talented female producers to our busy production department. Each of them brings their own unique quality and character to the company.”

  • Thursday, Jan. 10, 2019
Cutters Studios Kansas City adds editors Bradley, Kirkpatrick
Editors Morgan Bradley (l) and Kalen Kirkpatrick
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- 

Cutters Studios Kansas City (CSKC) is now home to editors Morgan Bradley and Kalen Kirkpatrick.

Honored by AD2 San Francisco among its top young advertising leaders for 2018, Bradley has been a staff editor for Beast for the past 10 years, spanning the company’s West Coast and Chicago operations. With recent commercial credits for Audi, Fitbit, Nike, Sephora and Twitter, and wide recognition for her artistry through Free the Bid, Bradley is a KC native who is thrilled to be returning to her hometown, thanks to Cutters.

Meanwhile Kirkpatrick has been promoted to editor, following four years as an assistant editor at Cutters in Chicago. Kirkpatrick has excelled in honing his craft under the guidance of many acclaimed Cutters editors, while earning awards recognition and contributing to major commercial and feature film projects.

  • Monday, Jan. 7, 2019
DelPurgatorio, Richardson, Carroll join Framestore's Chicago office
Danny DelPurgatorio
CHICAGO -- 

Framestore has hired three new creatives for its Chicago office: Danny DelPurgatorio as creative director, Krysten Richardson as Flame artist, and Jordan Carroll as CG lead/supervisor. The company’s Chicago shop, which opened in May 2017, has grown rapidly in its first year and a half, more than doubling the number of employees.

DelPurgatorio, a longstanding member of the Chicago creative community, brings to Framestore a range of experience. He originally moved to Chicago in 2009 as creative director for Vitamin Pictures. With a background in Illustration, DelPurgatorio began his career as a creative director at Reel FX in Dallas. His role saw him leading and directing both commercial and entertainment projects, including the 2008 short film Watchmen: Tales of the Black Freighter for Warner Brothers, Paramount, and DC Comics, a tie-in to Zack Snyder’s Watchmen adaptation, and produced by Snyder himself. Additionally, DelPurgatorio has worked with global brands such as Nike, Nintendo, and Northface, as a director and creative director as well as designer, animator, and compositor.

His experience in motion pictures and commercial work makes DelPurgatorio a strong addition to the Chicago office, where he will be helping grow the team’s design capabilities across advertising, entertainment, and immersive, in addition to leading a variety of projects in each discipline. 

Meanwhile Richardson has been a frequent collaborator with Framestore’s Los Angeles and Chicago teams, making her appointment a natural fit. Her portfolio includes brands such as Nike, Apple, Toyota, Sony, Gatorade, and Doritos, and she has worked as a freelance Flame artist at The Mill and Method, among other boutique VFX shops. She is also the founder of a global group for female Flame artists called “Ladies of Logik.” At Framestore, Richardson will supervise shoots and lead projects, while also working directly with clients to help fulfill their creative goals.

Carroll joins Framestore from The Mill Chicago, where he worked as a lead CG artist over a variety of projects and clients, including Disney, GMC, and Chevrolet. Trained in VFX at Savannah College of Art and Design, Carroll began his career at Firstborn in NYC, before moving to Chicago. At Framestore he will work across a range of pitches and projects, both supervising shoots and working directly on individual jobs, while also continuing to grow the office’s CG department. 

Krystina Wilson, managing director, Framestore Chicago, is enthused over the three new hires, sharing, “I’ve had the distinct pleasure of working with Jordan and Krysten at different points in my career and have always been impressed with Danny’s reputation - his passion for pushing the work, for mentoring artists, and his natural leadership abilities--ever since I entered this market nearly seven years ago.”

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