Former HSI Exec Acquires JGF, Launches Sandwick Films

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Gorman for Alaska Airlines
Longtime HSI executive producer Bill Sandwick has acquired L.A. production company JGF -- home to comedy director Jeff Gorman -- and renamed the shop Sandwick Films. According to Sandwick, who left HSI two months ago, he plans to pull together a roster of between five and seven directors and build a mid-sized production company focused primarily on commercials. "I had a great time at HSI, but it was just time for me to do my own thing." he says. "I just really wanted to start small and look for the right guys." In addition to Gorman, Sandwick has already signed video director Marc Klasfeld of Rockhard Films for exclusive commercials representation. Klasfeld, who was formerly repped for spots by Hungry Man, will continue to shoot videos through Rockhard.

As for Gorman, he says he welcomes "the opportunity to concentrate on the creative aspect, because in today's industry the business end has become more involved than ever." Gorman launched JGF's predecessor company, Johns + Gorman, in 1985 with TBWA/Chiat/Day creative partner Gary Johns. In 1999, the shop became known as JGF. The veteran director has been shooting up a comedic storm as of late, directing recent commercials for Alaska Airlines, Sealy and one of this year's controversial Super Bowl spots for Bud Light.

"I've known Jeff for about eight years, we've been friends and I think he's a great director," says Sandwick, who -- after 17 years at HSI -- qualifies as an industry veteran himself. "When I left HSI, I talked to a lot of different people. I had a lot of different opportunities, but you have to find the right fit, something that feels right, something that makes you want to work again. Jeff's a really good director and that's what I'm looking for. I'm not looking for a flavor of the month or quirkiness. I'm looking for guys who can do anything."

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