- BEVERLY HILLS, Calif.
CoMPANY Films, the shop under the aegis of executive producers Richard Goldstein and Ron Cicero, has added director/photographer/adventurer Renan Ozturk to its filmmaking roster for U.S. representation spanning commercials and branded content. Ozturk is best known for his spot shoots for Apple and Nike, as well as his ongoing work as both a photojournalist for National Geographic and on-camera director/storyteller for outdoor recreation company The North Face.
“One million Instagram followers can’t be wrong,” said Cicero. “Renan’s a natural brand builder, whether its employing North Face gear while shooting one of his extreme mountaineering expeditions or directing an epic RAM anthem commercial in the harshest of conditions. His spot for West Virginia Tourism takes you into the moment like only a true adventurer could do. Renan’s work is a constant reminder of our connections to the natural world.”
For his part, Ozturk wanted to be represented by a production company that understood and appreciated his mindset. “To me, it’s about harnessing technology and giving voice to different cultures,” he said. “I never could have imagined that my passion for visual storytelling would find such large audiences. I told Ron straight up that I want to do more commercials, more cars, more tourism spots that help heighten appreciation for the conservation of cultures.”
Prior to joining CoMPANY Films, Ozturk worked through his own collective called Expedition on varied ad assignments, some of which he would direct while other times serving as DP.
Ozturk was born in Germany but moved to Rhode Island when he was a boy. At first he pursued a science degree in college, then was smitten by a love for landscape painting. He moved West to Utah to pursue his landscape artwork. He started hanging out with a ragtag group of climbers, creating his artwork while taking on expeditions all over the world. His work soon caught the attention of another climber, this one a co-founder of The North Face. Ozturk soon replaced canvas with camera, in the process becoming a pioneer in the use of cutting-edge technologies that allow for real-time screening of his adventures. His work gained a huge following. “It wasn’t just about the great outdoors or mountaineering,” he said, explaining his work’s popularity. “It was all about chronicling the different cultures.”
National Geographic named Ozturk Adventurer of the Year for his combination of cutting-edge ascents and stunning visuals. Additionally, Ozturk served as a DP and mountain climber on the prize-winning documentary Meru (Netflix), directed by Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi. Meru, which chronicles the first ascent of the Shark’s Fin on the Indian Himalayas, made an auspicious debut at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival where it won the Audience Award for best documentary. Recently, Ozturk’s latest feature--Lost on Everest, which he directed and shot--debuted on Disney+.