Turnpike Films Feels Great!

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Here's an inspiring story of web-borne buzz for all would-be directors out there. Last year, Justin Reardon -- an art director at DDB/Chicago who worked on Bud's celebrated "Whassup" campaign -- decided to break into commercials directing. He hooked up with producer Dave Farrell and became the one-man directing roster at Santa Monica startup Turnpike Films. Reardon wrote and directed a reel of spec spots, Turnpike posted them on the internet in November and, like a lot of spec reels, it sat there. Until 10 days ago, when a post at www.geeklife.com pointed readers to this over-the-top spec spot for Nutrigrain, in which a nutrition bar makes a guy feel so great that he takes charge of just about everything. Since then, the link has spread like wildfire across the blogosphere, where it's apparently finding the right people.

"There's nothing like getting the seal of approval from the public, then everbody catches on," says Farrell, who reports he's been inundated with interest from film people and ad agencies alike. "It's one of those crazy Hollywood stories. We're just trying to ride the beast."

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