Nigel Simpkiss, a director at the BBC's Top Gear, has joined UK production company Independent as a director. At the same time, in the US, Simpkiss has been signed by L.A.-based BRW. Simpkiss has shot commercials for auto brands including Lexus and Range Rover and started his career as a director of music videos. Most recently he made a documentary about Evil Knievel with Top Gear presenter Richard Hammond.
Philadelphia full service agency Bigsmack has hired Chris Grenier as creative director, working alongside creative director Andy Hann and executive producers Heidi Erney and Kelly Dials. Grenier joins from his role as vp/copy supervisor at Campbell-Ewald, Warren, MI. where he worked for ten years on campaigns for Chevrolet, OnStar, the United States Postal Service, Kaiser-Permanente, Alltel Wireless, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and the National Fatherhood Initiative.
Micah Scarpelli has joined editing company Nomad. Scarpelli, who will work out of New York, is working on a Verizon spot directed by Rory Kelleher of Believe Media. Previously with V2, Cutting Room and Fluid, he has worked on campaigns for Mercedes-Benz, Puma, MTV, the NFL, Smirnoff, Gillette and Subway as well as several music videos.