Comedy Director JJ Keith Joins A Common Thread

Posted by on Nov 26, 2012

LOS ANGELES—British comedy director JJ Keith has signed with Los Angeles-based A Common Thread for exclusive representation for commercials in the United States. Keith, who has an Academy Award nomination as well as a slew of advertising awards to his credit, has earned high regard in the U.K. and elsewhere in Europe for an inventive style of comedy that he has applied to such brands as Guinness, Subway, Coca-Cola, Land Rover, Vodafone and The BBC.

A Common Thread became interested in signing Keith through an Olympics campaign that he directed earlier this year for Shanghai agency BBH and Coca-Cola’s Ice Dew. The spot, in which pint-sized athletes attempt (but fail miserably) to compete with normal-size athletes, was short-listed at Cannes.

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A Common Thread’s Ross Ching Sends Popsicle Sticks Tumbling on a Mission for Love

Posted by on Nov 13, 2012

LOS ANGELES— Popsicle sticks serve as a springboard to true love in a clever new spot directed by Ross Ching of A Common Thread.

Titled Sweeten Your Life, the spot, directed by Ching on spec, centers on a domino-like chain reaction in which hundreds of the familiar wooden sticks are sent flying in the air. A boy sets up an intricately woven maze of sticks at a beach in order to attract the attention of a young girl. The last stick in the chain tumbles in a plastic cup held by the girl. It bears a message asking her for a date.

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A Common Thread Creates a Ghoulish Campaign for Universal Studios

Posted by on Oct 10, 2012

LOS ANGELES—A new commercial for Universal Studios’ Halloween Horror Nights is meant to spur viewers to run for their lives…and straight into the amusement park. A Common Thread produced the spot for Los Angeles agency David & Goliath, delivering a chilling piece of filmmaking that plays like a 30-second horror flick.

In Gates, four teens are walking along a foggy street in the dead of night when they spot another teen running at breakneck speed, pursued by a horde of crazed and ravenous zombies. Screaming, they bolt and seek safety behind a pair of towering iron gates. However, the moment they slam the gates shut and turn around, they find themselves confronted by another blood-thirsty mob of horrific creatures —they’ve locked themselves inside Universal Studios.

A Common Thread and director Clay Staub invested the spot with all the trappings of a teen slasher movie: kinetic cinematography, ghoulish make-up, creepy locations and fevered performances. “Clay pulled from his background as a 2nd Unit Director on Dawn of the Dead, 300 and The Thing,” explains A Common Thread executive producer J.P. McMahon. “He knows how to manage zombies and monsters. He worked with them intensely on how to run, crawl and growl—it’s got a hellish vibe.”

To lens the spot, A Common Thread tapped director of photography Gonzalo Amat, whose credits include The Devil Inside. His footage is both beautiful and haunting.

One of the challenges of the production, notes McMahon, was to squeeze the classic horror movie narrative arc into a half-minute format. “The story starts off in slow motion but ramps up quickly and takes viewers on a high-speed thrill ride to the end,” he says. “The goal was to make it as scary as hell.”

A Common Thread is located at 4081 Redwood Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90066. For more information, call 310.823.7300 or visit http://www.acommonthread.tv

Credits

Title:                      Gates

Client:                   Universal Studios

Agency:                David & Goliath, Los Angeles.  David Angelo, Chairman, Chief Creative Officer; Ben Purcell, Creative Director; Steve Yee, Creative Director; Carrie Lighthall, Agency Senior Producer.

Production:        A Common Thread, Los Angeles. Clay Staub, director; J.P. McMahon, Executive Producer; Tristan Drew, Executive Producer; Gonzalo Amat, Director of Photography.

Creature FX:       Sota FX. Roy Knyrim.

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