Backyard productions, L.A., Chicago - Founded: 1989

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Principals: Roy Skillicorn, Head of Sales/Partner; Blair Stribley, Executive Producer/Partner; Peter Steinzeig, Head of Production; Kris Mathur, Executive Producer; Eriks Krumins, Executive Producer

Roster: Rob Pritts, Kevin Smith, director/cameraman, Don Rase, Chace Strickland, Steve Burrows, Tim Abshire

While the industry as a whole has been struggling through the drought, it seems that Backyard has been flooded with good work. We've barely come up for air on Kevin Smith's hysterical in-the-buff campaign for Yard Fitness, and he's already back to tease us with the slow pour on Heinz Ketchup and "Straw Wars" for Red Fusion. Rob Pritts also stepped in with his own oddities and could very well be dubbed the curious candyman, given the '50s pseudo-doc campaign for Altoids' puckery new sours, as well as his continuing work for M&M's, this time on a spot featuring a Godzilla-sized Yellow one raging through Tokyo streets. Pritts also helmed a humorous slate for Mullen and Sealy, with folks plunging into deep Z's in out-there scenarios that impart the mattress' soporific power to race cars and shag rugs. The shop also added muscle, figuratively and literally, in the form of MTV-alum Tim Abshire, who came from Shelter Films, and EP Eriks Krumins, a former U.S. Team water polo player who was previously EP at Original Film.

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