- LOS ANGELES
Documentary filmmaker Alison Chernick has joined RSA Films for commercial representation. Her substantial body of long and short-form work includes the feature documentary Itzhak about virtuoso violinist Itzhak Perlman, which earned a Grammy nomination for Best Music Film in 2019 after a widespread international theatrical release. Chernick’s documentary short on Jackson Pollock will premiere on PBS in the spring. She’s done other films on art super stars such as Jeff Koons, Roy Lichtenstein and Matthew Barney, and directed a variety of branded content for brands like Estee Lauder, Joe’s Jeans, L’Oréal, Spectrum and Yellow Pages, to note just a few. Chernick’s previous production company affiliations in the ad arena included Independent Media and Little Minx.
“We are big fans of Alison’s work,” said David Mitchell, managing director, RSA Films. “She’s directed so many fascinating stories about compelling subjects, from The Jeff Koons Show to Nowness shorts on Almodóvar and Rick Rubin, to films about reclusive fashion designer Martin Margiela and artist Matthew Barney’s collaboration with Björk, No Restraint. With so many brands embracing the storytelling power of independent filmmakers, we’re excited to bring Alison opportunities to do what she does so well in branded content and commercials.”
Chernick said of RSA, “I appreciate the company’s wide breadth of talent and work, especially the synergy between advertising and entertainment and the success RSA has had in the branded film space.”
Chernick, a native New Yorker, has always possessed a healthy curiosity, so interviewing and storytelling was a natural career path to take. She took some film classes and worked in television where she picked up technical filmmaking skills. She made the conscious decision to unlearn formulaic storytelling and focus instead on verité-style filmmaking. And her talent for serving up engaging stories that unfold authentically and unhurriedly have earned her a following among audiences. She founded her own production company--Voyeur Films--in 2006.
Chernick’s subjects center around art, fashion, music, gastronomy and health. Other examples of her work include Roy Lichtenstein Diagram of an Artist, which accompanied a Tate Modern retrospective on Lichtenstein in 2013. The film portrays the artist as likeable and prolific. It invites audiences into his life with clips of him and interviews of his wife and inner circle. Chernick’s Nowness short El Bulli: The Golden Ticket interviews the chef of El Bulli restaurant on the Costa Brava, sharing the intimate spaces of the kitchen and exterior, with its unprecedented story of cuisine that marries science and the culinary arts.
Chernick is in the works on a new film about the Swedish artist Hilma af Klint as well as a fiction project involving Jackson Pollock.
Chernick is a recipient of a National Endowment for The Humanities award and was invited to judge for the agency in 2018. She’s also received a NYWIFT award, a Loreen Arbus grant and a Woman of Her Word grant.