Directors to Watch 2008: Agustin Alberdi

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Agustin Alberdi
Agustin Alberdi
Egads! An Argentinean director wants to move away from the huge-cast-having-wacky-fun spot! Agustin Alberdi has directed his fair share of funny, epic ensemble work, like CTI "Song of the Summer" out of del Campo Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi and Schneider "Jokesters" from La Comunidad, Buenos Aires, but lately he's looking for scripts with more oomph in the idea. "We used to make a lot of big commercials, that were maybe more about atmosphere," says Alberdi from Landia headquarters in Buenos Aires. "There's a lot of comedy to that. The musical on the beach is very Argentinean, there's a kind of circus. [But lately] I prefer to catch concrete, nice ideas, [ones] that are very synthetic, and move them to the best place."

That best place tends to be a zone of strangeness and hilarity, like in two recent videos for his buddies in rock band Babasonicos, "Microdancing" and "Pijamas," the former a dance-off in an electronics store and the latter a parade of surreal situational visuals, or a spot he co-directed with Landia head Andy Fogwill for La Comunidad, Schneider's "Betty," in which a group of young dudes discover they turn into an old woman with a dog when they say "splendid."

"I approach all the humor with some parts that are absurd," Alberdi says. "Not to put something unbelievable, but to represent reality and put something of an anomaly inside." Alberdi says he and the Landia gang have been scouring for boards with that potential, but that's been especially hard this year. "Every script the agencies send, we're putting our heads together on it, getting more aggressive and more creative."

Read about Emil Moller, another of our 2008 Directors to Watch.

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