The 2009 Creativity 50: John Boiler, Glenn Cole, Matt Jarvis and Robert Nakata

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From left: Matt Jarvis, John Boiler, Glenn Cole and Robert Nakata
From left: Matt Jarvis, John Boiler, Glenn Cole and Robert Nakata
Four years ago an independent agency sprouted up amid Southern California's ideal weather conditions. Since then, the shop's roughly 200 percent annual growth isn't due to the 72 degree temperatures or the sunshine, but rather its innovative and creative work for clients like Nike, the Discovery Channel, Quiksilver, Bugaboo and 2K Sports. This year, 72andSunny created two of the most enjoyable spots of 2008, redesigned surf giant Quiksilver's website and made hoopsters drool with 2K Sports' NBA 2K9 "The Other Season" online fantasy competition. Add to that moves to bigger offices in both L.A. and Amsterdam, and 2008 was a pretty busy year.

Still, Discovery Channel's "I Love the World" and Nike's "The Next Level" remain our favorites of the shop's impressive output. With a brief to help the Discovery Channel connect more with its younger audience, co-founder and creative director Glenn Cole and Co. enlisted some of the channel's popular show hosts, along with other notable figures like Stephen Hawking for a spot that sang a catchy campfire song to the Earth. "It was more a matter of finding a good way to express that 'the world is awesome' idea," says Cole. "It was about finding something the world could sing along to that would be fun and cool, even if it was a bit schmaltzy." For Nike soccer, the shop gave viewers a first person perspective on what it takes to become a pro footballer, with the help of some world-class players and director Guy Ritchie. "It was created, literally, to motivate soccer players to get off the sofa and go work on their game," says co-founder and creative director John Boiler, before pointing to the agency's overall approach to creative challenges. "We aim for big, sustainable ideas—sometimes for companies, sometimes for campaigns—that connect with people in meaningful ways. Clear objectives, met with magnetic ideas, executed at the highest standard. I guess that's the approach."

Cole and Boiler, on hiring: "Clients need big, sustainable ideas that drive their business. We look for talent who can deliver that. That said, most of the people here are hybrids in some way. Strategic designers. Creative producers. Conceptual brand managers. Accountability is truly shared. Which can freak out people who prefer structure and clearly defined roles. So it's not for everyone."

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