Santa Monica, Calif.— Commercial, music video and feature film director Duane Crichton has joined The Joneses for exclusive representation for U.S. advertising work. The agreement marks the first time that Crichton, a Canadian, has been represented in the United States. He is represented by Partners Film Company, Toronto, in Canada, where his credits include work for Volkswagen, Toyota, Rogers, Home Depot and Ontario Tourism. He first garnered wide attention when his Adidas spec spot Three won a Shots’ Young Directors Award at Cannes.
Mel Gragido, executive producer of The Joneses, said that he was impressed by Crichton’s skills as a storyteller and filmmaker. “Duane is a director who has just scratched his potential,” Gragido said. “His approach to storytelling is fresh and honest, and he has a wonderful ability to connect with a younger audience. We think he has a great career in front of him.”
Crichton said that he has wanted to enter the U.S. market for some time and has been waiting for the right time and seeking the right production company. “I liked The Joneses immediately because it has a smaller roster of directors and a younger vibe,” he said. “I made lists of production companies by various criteria and The Joneses kept coming out on top. That made the decision easy.”
A graduate of Ryerson University, Toronto, Crichton got his start directing music videos. In 2004, his videos Who Dat (Jelleestone) and Friend of Mine (In Essence) won MuchMusic Video Awards for Best Rap Video and Best Hip Hop Video, respectively. He began directing commercials in 2003 and was represented by Spy Film before joining Partners Film Company in 2010.
Typical of Crichton’s work is Feed Man for the candy brand Maltesers. It’s disarmingly simple premise has a couple sitting on a couch watching TV. When the girl asks the guy for a candy, he obliges by using a straw and a little wind power to lift a chocolate ball from a package and drop it in her mouth.
“It feels like a real moment between two people that we, the audience, just happen to witness,” Crichton explains. “I’m a storyteller. All of my spots have a beginning, middle and end. Beyond that, I look for sincere performances coupled with good looking film. It’s a cinematic reality.”
Digits for Canadian phone company Rogers, is another favorite. It follows a young man as he tries to call a girl who has given him her phone number, but the last two digits are obscured. “I like the story and the way the casting turned out,” Crichton says. “It has a nice honesty to it.”
The Joneses is located at 1501 Colorado, Suite C, Santa Monica, California 90404. For more information, call 310.656.8300 or visit www.thejoneses.tv