Production Company A-List 2015: B-Reel

Former Prodco of the Year Got Even Bigger and More Diverse

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Former Creativity Production Company of the Year B-Reel exploded over the last twelve months. It built out its business on a grand scale, now boasting six offices around the world to accommodate a spectrum of work ranging from creative conceptualization to an impressive range of productions comprising digital, traditional, branded content and straight-up entertainment.

The company's growing output of diverse projects across led to a reorganization: its commercials and feature film projects will operate under B-Reel Films, while digital will fall under B-Reel Creative. The new set-up, according to the company, is designed to "satisfy both the demand for traditional, cutting edge production" alongside the demand for an integrated approach on "conceptual creative services rooted in strong understanding of production and new technology."

Among the company's production highlights were integrated projects with top digital brands. B-Reel partnered with the Google team to rebrand Google Calendar, resulting in a new marketing site and colorful film directed by Magnus Harder. The company also partnered with the tech giant on a fun World Cup game. The "Kick With Chrome" Chrome Experiment was a fun mobile to desktop game that allowed players to test their soccer kicking, dribbling and shooting skills across a rainbow of turfs. B-Reel also dove into VR with Google "Expeditions," an educational platform due out this fall that will allow teachers to lead their students on trips to historic places around the world, with the help of a Cardboard headset.

See the full Production Company A-List 2015
See the full Production Company A-List 2015

Facebook tapped B-Reel to make sense of the Newsfeed feature. Nine quirky native ads starred real Facebook users explaining how they used features of the Newsfeed in order to give others tips on how to make the most of their own streams.

The company also brought a fresh new initiative to MTV, MTV bump, a global digital platform that invited viewers to submit their own content-- and then see it on-air within hours.

On the more traditional front, standouts include the Jesper Hiro-directed "Hello," for Dignity Health. Created out of Eleven, San Francisco, the ad brought the emotion back to Lionel Richie' '80s love ballad "Hello," by showing first time meetings between a baby meeting various members of his extended families.

Tom Malmros also directed a frighteningly good ad for amusement park Grona Lund's House of Nightmares. The Friday the 13th-meets-Nightmare on Elmstreet ad was so scary it was banned on Swedish TV before 9 pm.

Outside of the branded world, B-Reel has been turning out a number of features as well as episodic television. The company's "Honor Among Thieves" is set for release this fall, while "The Serious Game," will hit screens next year. Two more films "Euforia," from newcomer Lisa Langseth and "Midsommar," are scheduled to beging shooting next year. The company is also about to begin shooting on a crime series for TV, "Before We Die," set for release in 2016.

With B-Reel's business expansion came the addition of new talent, including veteran producer Fran McGivern, who ran ACNE U.S. for three years after her post as EP at RSA; talent manager Ketih White, formerly of TBWA/MAL and Wieden & Kennedy; U.S. Director of Strategy Kate Hironaka, previously at 72andSunny, Goodby and Wired Magazine; former TBWA/MAL and 180 staffer Melina Polly as U.S. strategy director. The company also added as creative directors Jonathan Vingiano, founder of OKFocus who joined from R/GA; freelancer Ben Hughes and AKQA vet Dino Erdmann, who joined from AKQA after stints at Jung von Matt and 180 Amsterdam.