Kink Ausher, House of Usher Films

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Although we're still reeling from the one where a guy outbutts a ram for Mountain Dew, the House of Usher continues to build out. Usher's recent work includes dudes mesmerized by Mountain Dew Livewire; Sierra Mist baboons; curiously, a Wrigley's singing gumball; and Chinese-tongued talent in a pucker-faced Sour Starburst spot. His range also extends beyond gutbusters, as seen most recently in low-key portraiture for Apple.

What's the most important consideration for a commercials director? "You have to know what you're doing. Know your shots. There's a million ways to shoot a scene but only one way is right."

What's the most rewarding aspect of your job? "The camaraderie generated among the craftspeople that I work with and the people that helped me create my vision. Because, ultimately, it's relationships that have value. Praise is hollow."

What kind of projects haven't you done that you would like to do? "I've pretty much done every kind of filmmaking, although I'd like to do more action-oriented scripts. I loved doing VW for Arnold."

What's the weirdest thing that's happened to you on a job? "I was a camera assistant for Joe Pytka, doing a Bartles & Jaymes spot in Napa. It was around Halloween. Joe was a little cranky that day and he was kind of getting after everybody. So Tommy Doherty, the animal grip, comes out of the bushes with a pumpkin on his head and his willy hanging out and starts attacking Joe. And I thought to myself, This is one crazy fucking business."

Name a milestone in your career. "At the beginning, some very key people helped get my career off the ground and believed in me when nobody else did; people like Linda Carlson, Beth Hagen and Steven Monkarsh. They really created my milestone.

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