Winner of Cannes and LIAA awards gains U.S. representation for the first time.
LOS ANGELES—Comedy director Dave Klaiber has signed with Bully Pictures for exclusive representation in the United States. It’s the first time that the young, Australian-born director has pursued work in the U.S. In 2008, Klaiber won a Silver Lion at Cannes for the Thrifty spot Birthday Girl. He is also the winner of two Gold London International Advertising Awards and a Gold Mobius Award.
“Dave’s comedy reel is one of the funniest I have seen in a long time. It’s so honest and refreshing, with great natural performances, “ says Bully EP Jason Forest. “I think Dave is going to be working here a lot.”
Klaiber is eager to work in the United States and sees it as a way to broaden his horizons and hone his craft. “The Australian industry is very healthy, but recently, I’ve been getting more work from outside the country,” he says. “I’m interested in expanding on that.” He added that he interviewed with several U.S. production companies and chose Bully in part due to its success with foreign directors. “I really like the way they go about things,” he observes. “It’s a good fit.”
Klaiber worked in a variety of production capacities before earning his first chance to direct in 2002 via Plaza Films, Sydney. Six years later, he garnered international attention when he won his Silver Lion for the Thrifty Birthday Girl spot which centers on the hilarious over-the-top reaction of a teenager upon learning that her parents have bought her a car. Klaiber has also directed for such brands as LG, Kit Kat, Kellogg’s, and Nissan.
“I’ve always had a keen interest in comedy,” says Klaiber, noting that in the early years, he received advice and encouragement from Paul Middleditch, one of Australia’s top comedy directors. “It’s a constant challenge. I love the fact that you can mold ideas. You can take something that may seem simple and, with forethought and great actors, turn it into an award winner.”
Klaiber’s most recent effort is a public service campaign for the New South Wales Rural Fire Service out of Sydney agency The Campaign Palace. One spot shows a house and surrounding woodlands engulfed in flames. A man is outfront “polishing” his scorched car while his just as oblivious wife washes dishes in the burning kitchen. They blithely discuss the need to prepare for wildfires, but are too busy to make a plan.
“It is a light-hearted twist on a very serious subject,” he says. “We had great scripts and had a lot of fun making the spots…It was pretty much all shot in camera, we got to burn down a house and created an explosion. The results are amazing. It’s some of the best work I’ve done.”
Klaiber is anxious to see how American audiences react to his unique approach to comedy. “We are different in some ways,” he observes, “but comedy is comedy. I recently directed a spot in China that was shot in Mandarin. I don’t speak the language, but I knew what needed to be done and how the actors needed to do it. In the end, it wasn’t so much about language, it was about performance, body language and how the dialogue was delivered.”
About Bully Pictures:
Bully Pictures is a full-service commercial broadcast, web viral, branded content production company located in Santa Monica, California. The company’s roster includes Javier Aguilera, Dustin Lance Black, Juergen Bollmeyer, Fredrik Callinggard, FRAME, Gaute Hesthagen, Daniel Kaufman, Dave Klaiber, Franco Marinelli, Greg Maya, Luke Savage, Michael Shapiro, Craig Tanimoto, Morten Tyldum and Eric Will. For more information, write [email protected]