J.J. Adler joins M ss ng P eces, O'Grady-Peyton signs to Hey Wonderful, MediaMonks taps Verdult

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J.J. Adler joins m ss ng p eces
J.J. Adler joins m ss ng p eces Credit: M ss ng p eces

Comedy vet J.J. Adler has joined the roster of m ssn g p eces. The director/writer has helmed commercials and films for brands including P&G, Toyota, Virgin Mobile, Nestle, Coca-Cola and Verizon, out of agencies R/GA, Droga5, Grey, BBDO and The Martin Agency. Her work has garnered honors at the Cannes Lions, The Webby Awards and The One Show. The move reunites Adler with M ssng P eces Managing Partner Brian Latt, who had worked with her out of her former production company Tool.

Adler had been a founding creative and head director at "The Onion News Network." She was also co-executive producer and director on the first season of The Onion's 2011 IFC TV series of the same name. Adler holds an M.F.A. in film from Columbia University. Her graduate thesis short, "New Media," premiered and earned several awards at Sundance in 2010. Her documentary short "Unattached" earned a 2008 Student Academy Award and a grant from A&E IndieFilms.

TJ O'Grady-Peyton
TJ O'Grady-Peyton Credit: Sean Jackson

Hey Wonderful is adding director TJ O'Grady-Peyton to its roster for commercial representation in the U.S., while Ridley Scott Creative Group's Darling Films will represent him for the U.K. O'Grady-Peyton first gained industry recognition in 2013 when he was shortlisted at the Young Directors Award in Cannes for his Adidas "Super" film. Since then, he has directed work including a cinematic campaign for Asics, Webby Award-winner "Footballers" for Gatorade featuring Cam Newton and BMW's portrait of Paralympian Josh George. He is currently in post-production on a Diesel commercial and a spot for Irish Tourism. Hey Wonderful has also hired Earl McDaniel as executive producer/head of production. McDaniel was most recently head of production at Pretty Bird, and rose up the ranks at Propaganda Films working with directors such as David Fincher, Michael Bay and Antoine Fuqua.

Martin Verdult
Martin Verdult Credit: MediaMonks

Following its acquisition by Martin Sorrell's S4 Capital, MediaMonks is appointing Martin Verdult as managing director of its London office. Verdult joins from his former role as managing partner at Ogilvy & Mather Shanghai, where he ran the business and managed client relations across Asia since 2014. His experience in digital advertising and business management includes collaborating with agencies LBi Lost Boys and Razorfish, and work for brands such as Korean Air, InterContinental Hotel Groups, H&M, Mondelez International and Budweiser.

Jakob Marky (right). On the set of Ikea 'Poäng'
Jakob Marky (right). On the set of Ikea 'Poäng' Credit: Sweetshop

Sweetshop has signed director Jakob Marky for representation globally, excluding Europe. Born in Gothenburg, the half-Swedish, half-Hungarian Marky has directed films in Scandinavia for Tryg, Nordea and Ikea, and won the Ingmar Bergman Award for Best screenplay for his film "Fuga." His Cannes Lions-awarded Facebook campaign for Skittles 'Super Mega Rainbow Updater' involved a call center which read out people's status updates. His interactive campaign, "Volkswagen: Golf Auditions" won Silver at the Epica awards and was also shortlisted at the Eurobest awards.

Lucas Zanotto, Nexus
Lucas Zanotto, Nexus Credit: Nexus

Lucas Zanotto has joined the roster of Nexus Studios for representation in the U.S., U.K. and Amsterdam. Zanotto's work spans across analog and digital techniques, with projects for global clients including Barclays, Telia and Paulig. He was behind the Wimbledon "140 Years" promo that earned a 2018 British Arrows award. Through his digital entertainment company Yatatoy, he helps nurture creativity in children through music and art. The app "Bandimal," for example, teaches music through animated cartoon animals and earned a 2018 Apple design award.

Adam Littke
Adam Littke Credit: Lucky 21

Lucky 21 is adding comedy director Adam Littke to its roster. His directing career took off when his music video for Grum caught the eye of David Lynch, followed by the win for Best Music Video at the Los Angeles Film Festival. His advertising debut came as one of the winners of the Saatchi & Saatchi New Director Award at Cannes and was followed by collaborations with agencies and brands including Sony, HTC, American Airlines, and Formula One. His directing work has appeared on NBC, BBC, Comedy Central, Fox, Bravo, Pitchfork and Lifetime.

Cristina Costantini and Darren Foster
Cristina Costantini and Darren Foster Credit: Weston Bury

Saville Productions is signing directors Cristina Costantini and Darren Foster for U.S. commercial representation. The directing duo recently made its feature documentary debut with the film "Science Fair," winner of the Festival Favorite Award at Sundance Film Festival and the Audience Award at SXSW, Sun Valley Film Festival, Cleveland Film Festival, Portland International Film Festival and the Tumbleweeds Film Festival. Both directors come from an investigative journalism background and prior to directing "Science Fair," they directed and produced the investigative documentary "Death by Fentanyl" about the role of fentanyl in the opiate epidemic.

L-R: Lobo EP Luis Ribeiro, Founder Mateus De Paula Santos, AD Felipe Jornada, CD Guilherme Marcondes
L-R: Lobo EP Luis Ribeiro, Founder Mateus De Paula Santos, AD Felipe Jornada, CD Guilherme Marcondes Credit: LOBO

Brazilian creative animation/design studio Lobo has expanded its U.S. presence, opening a new studio in NYC's Chinatown. Led by creative director Guilherme Marcondes, art director Felipe Jornada and executive producer Luis Ribeiro, the new independent space was launched to address the growing workflow demands from the U.S. market. Director/Founder Mateus De Paula Santos will continue to oversee both offices creatively and Lobo's NYC team will work closely with the São Paulo office. Recent work out of Lobo's U.S. office includes the "FlipLand" campaign for Chobani, and animated PSA "Sunshine" for Day One out of BBDO NY.

Rob Ballingall
Rob Ballingall Credit: Sonic Union

New York-based audio studio Sonic Union is adding composer/experiential sound designer/mixer Rob Ballingall, who will be working out of both its Bryant Park and Union Square locations. Formerly at Nylon Studios, Ballingall has composed music used in campaigns for clients including Ford, Kellogg and Walmart, and provided sound design/engineering on projects for the Ad Council and Resistance Radio for Amazon Studios and "The Man in the High Castle." He recently created an experiential in-theatre commercial for Mercedes-Benz Canada, and for National Geographic's "One Strange Rock" VR experience directed by Darren Aronofsky, he crafted audio for custom VR headsets designed in the style of astronaut helmets.

Leslie Harro
Leslie Harro Credit: Havoc Content

Havoc Content, the production company founded by Ed Rivero, is hiring Leslie Harro as its new partner and executive producer. Harro, most recently at Double Wide Media, brings with her a quintet of directors: Svetlana Cvetko, Ryan Travis, Moh Azima, Luke Perkins and Marcello Lima. Prior to joining Havoc, Cvetko was with Double Wide. Travis joins from the in-house marketing and production arm of the NFL, and is also represented in Italy by Indiana Productions. Azima joins from Vayner Media; prior to that he was with Vice Media, and has also been on the roster at Double Wide and Paydirt. Perkins is launching his career as a commercial director with Havoc, coming over from the agency side, most recently at North in Portland, and Lima is on the roster at Havoc's sister company, Cortez Brothers, as well as at Sao Paulo's Sentimental Filme.

Jeff Masters
Jeff Masters Credit: ATK PLN

ATK PLN is hiring Jeff Masters as CG Supervisor. Masters has over a decade of experience in visual effects and animation, cutting his teeth on compositing and lighting roles for a wide range of feature films, commercials, theme park rides, and VR experiences out of Digital Domain and Reel FX Animation. His feature film credits include "Thor," "47 Ronin" and "Rock of Ages."

Johnnie Semerad and Megan Oepen
Johnnie Semerad and Megan Oepen Credit: Alkemy X

Creative content company Alkemy X is entering into a joint venture with multidisciplinary studio Quietman and is also bringing on director and creative director Megan Oepen. The Quietman deal will see founder and creative director Johnnie Semerad moving the operations of his company into Alkemy X, where both parties will share all creative talent, resources, and capabilities. Oepen, meanwhile, was formerly the executive producer and director for Red Bull's Non-Live/Long Format Productions group, and headed Under Armour's Content House. She was also the creator behind Under Armour Originals.

Editorial house PS260 has opened its own creative content studio, We Know the Future. The company, based in both L.A. and N.Y., provides in-house production capabilities across screen-focused channels. PS260 Co-Founder, Editor and Partner JJ Lask will lead the studio from L.A., with support from staff across both offices. To support content production, the company partners with a span of creatives such as writers, directors and influencers. Its first project "American Counselor" debuted in July on PS260's YouTube channel, with more episodes to come throughout the summer. Directed by Brendan Gibbons, the 14-episode series personifies the liberal and conservative sides of the country as a couple going through marriage counseling.

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