Director Vaughan Arnell, whose body of work spans high-profile music videos and commercials, has joined Merman’s branded and advertising division in the U.S. and U.K. Merman will handle him globally for commercials. (Arnell continues to be repped for music videos by Marisa Garner Associates, London).
Arnell’s work in the ad arena includes such notable fare as Levi’s “Creek,” Stella Artois’s “Red Shoes,” Aviva’s “I am John” and Wrangler’s “Be More Than Just a Number.” Prior to connecting with Merman, he was handled by Moxie Pictures in the U.S. and U.K. His work has scored numerous accolades, including D&ADs and British Arrows. He recently shot a Sky project featuring Idris Elba.
On the music video front, Arnell has directed for such artists as George Michael, Kylie Minogue, The Spice Girls, as well as Robbie Williams, for whom his video “Rock DJ” attained iconic status. Vaughan has scooped up numerous honors for music videos in his career including three Brit Awards. His videos on YouTube have been collectively viewed over 4 billion times. In 2016, Arnell also won an MVA Icon Award for his dedication to the music industry.
Arnell described Merman as “one of the most exciting and forward thinking production companies around. From the moment I walked in, I could feel a real energy and hunger from the whole team. Their passion for creativity is palpable. My notebook is crammed full of ideas which I just can’t wait to develop with Merman.”
Siobhan Murphy, Merman’s managing director/EP of branded and commercials in London, added, “I had the pleasure of working with Vaughan previously and loved every minute. We have a fantastic working relationship and I had always hoped that one day we would be reunited. He is hugely committed to everything he puts his name to, whether that’s a music video or a commercial. Vaughan’s passion is infectious and we’re looking forward here at Merman to creating into a diverse range of opportunities from long form to short form.”
Merman’s advertising and branded division has offices in London, New York and Los Angeles, and is led by managing partners Kira Carstensen, Ellen Clarke, Annique DeCaestecker and Jeremy Rainbird. The London office is under the directorship of joint managing directors Murphy and Spencer Dodd. In addition to commercial content helmed by an award-winning roster of directors, Merman’s focus is to bring writers and creators from their TV and film family into scripting entertainment for brands in collaboration with agency partners.
Merman’s production and entertainment organization includes a TV division run by the duo of Sharon Horgan and Clelia Mountford, and under their leadership Merman has won multiple accolades including three BAFTAs and multiple Emmy and RTS nominations. Merman’s recent TV projects include: Motherland for BBC2 (directed by Merman’s commercially represented director Juliet May), Catastrophe for Channel 4/Amazon created by and starring Horgan, BAFTA award-winning There She Goes for BBC4, critically acclaimed This Way Up for Hulu/Channel 4, and Morgana Robinson’s Summer: Dream Land (directed by Merman’s commercially represented MJ Delaney) which also won a BAFTA award for Best Short Form Program.
Merman Branded and talent/literary agency Independent Talent Group (ITG) formed an alliance in 2019 reflecting the belief that as longer form advertising content evolves, this cross pollination of multi-disciplinary writers, directors and producers will benefit both brands and agencies alike.
Back in 2018 Merman launched digital sister Mermade specializing in the creation of content of all shapes and sizes, funded by and for social and streaming platforms, brands and publishers, with a particular focus on short-form episodic.