DGA Nominates 5 Directors
January 16, 2007
ADWEEK
By Gregory Solman


Brian Buckley's 'Manthem' for Burger King garnered a nomination.

LOS ANGELES The Directors Guild of America today announced a mix of first-time and perennial nominees for best commercial direction.

MJZ's Dante Ariola was nominated for three spots, "First Taste" for Coca-Cola, creative by independent Wieden + Kennedy; "Human" for Johnny Walker, Bartle Bogle Hegarty; and "Snowball" for Traveler's Insurance, Fallon. Ariola was nominated in 2000, 2002 and 2004 as well.

MJZ's Tom Kuntz was recognized for Leo Burnett's Altoids spot, "Fruit Pants," and TBWA\Chiat\Day's "Trade," "Beard" and "Leak" commercials for Skittles.

Hungry Man's Bryan Buckley and David Gray were also nominated. Buckley was cited for Ogilvy & Mather's "Animal" spot for American Express and for two Burger King commercials, "Manthem" and "More Mayo," created by MDC Partners' Crispin Porter + Bogusky. Buckley earned nominations in 1999 and 2000.

Gray's recognition came for Ogilvy & Mather's "Transvestite" and "Mugger" spots for the Tribeca Film Festival; for WongDoody's "Jesus Throws" for Full Tilt Poker; and for Delaney Lund's "Born" for ebay.

"David's knowledge and appreciation of the sport, plus his ability to work with high-profile talent made him an ideal director for the [poker] spot," said Chris Bruyere, account director at WongDoody, Los Angeles. "There is a realness to the creative. It was integral that David allowed the players to be who they are."

Pytka's Joe Pytka received his 15th DGA nomination for commercial direction. The guild recognized his DDB spot for Budweiser, "Clydesdales American Dream," Leo Burnett's "Preparation" for Disney and TBWA\C\D's "Where Were You?" for the WTC Memorial. Pykta was first nominated in 1986 and most recently in 2003.

DGA president Michael Apted congratulated the nominees for "their superb work. It takes great skill to tell a compelling story in under 30 to 60 seconds. These five commercial directors have mastered the format, using their talent, craft and imagination to provide us with some of the most innovative filmmaking out there today."

The winners will be announced Feb. 3 at the 59th annual DGA awards dinner here.