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- Monday, Sep. 21, 2020
Veteran director Bruce Van Dusen reflects on ad biz in book "60 Stories About 30 Seconds"
With a career spanning 45 years and more than 1,000 commercials for the likes of Ford, AT&T, TD Ameritrade, Fiat and Kellogg’s, among many others, director Bruce Van Dusen reflects on commercialmaking in his recently released book, “60 Stories About 30 Seconds: How I Got Away with Becoming a Pretty Big Commercial Director without Losing My Soul (Or Maybe Just Part of It).”
In the early 1970s, armed with a film school degree from Boston University and a total of $175 in his pocket, Van Dusen headed to New York City to make documentary films. Having no industry contacts and little resources, he was desperate for a job. With a mix of audacity, determination and hard work, he found himself directing commercials and running his own company at the age of 23. He discovered he had a knack for crafting emotional stories, anchored by great performances, that could be told in 30 seconds. Along the way, he came in contact with a remarkable cast of characters--A list movie stars (Geena Davis, Clint Eastwood, Martin Short, Charles Bronson, Billy Dee Williams, Vanessa Williams), star athletes (Andre Agassi, Mia Hamm, Michael Schumacher, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar), as well as politicians, Lotto winners, child actors, trained animals, and men who wear toupees only on Tuesday and Thursday and go bald the rest of the week.
"60 Stories About 30 Seconds" is a success story of an unusual entrepreneur, an eye-opening guide for aspiring filmmakers, and a depiction of a slice of life that’s both unexpected and entertaining. Publisher is Post Hill Press/Simon & Schuster.