PORTFOLIO: JJ KEITH

JJ Keith must be a star. At the age of 28, he’s already set up his own company, won a Hollywood Film Festival award and has been nominated for an Oscar for his short film, Holiday Romance. Not only that, but in true celebrity style, he is taking his mother to the Oscars this weekend.

JJ Keith must be a star. At the age of 28, he’s already set up his

own company, won a Hollywood Film Festival award and has been nominated

for an Oscar for his short film, Holiday Romance. Not only that, but in

true celebrity style, he is taking his mother to the Oscars this

weekend.



Keith has been directing for three years since completing an MA in film

studies and history of art at Edinburgh University.



After Edinburgh, he secured a place as a runner/development assistant

with Working Title Films and, after several months of work without much

pay or sleep, he opted to set up his own production company, Cling

Films, in 1994. The purpose of the company was for Keith and his partner

to produce their own feature films, for which they raised funds by

holding ’celluloid’ nights in local clubs showing films on the

walls.



Keith’s talent was spotted by Smith Jones Campbell a year and a half ago

and he was introduced to the world of ads. Since then he has made two

spots for Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, for Gossard and Wella. Keith has a

definite interest in commercials - and not simply because of the

financial rewards. ’A newspaper said I was only into ads because they

make money, which upset me. I really like doing ads because they have

high impact and the quick turnaround is good,’ he says. ’Also they allow

me variety, which is something I like.’



Gossard was his favourite and not only because he got to sit through the

casting sessions. ’Creatively, I had the last say, which I liked,’ Keith

says.



’The creatives allowed me to have input and not just be a director.’



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