Lifetime Achievement: Frank Budgen/Tony Kaye

Frank Budgen and Tony Kaye are equal first among D&AD’s most awarded directors. Paul Rothwell pays tribute to his colleague Frank Budgen and D&AD’s Tim Lindsay explains what makes Kaye unique

What makes Frank stand out [says his producer Paul Rothwell] is the humanity of his work and a realism that he brings to it. Even if it is a very unreal situation, the humanity he brings to it makes you care and the realism makes you believe it.

Frank brought in a new visual language and a new way of storytelling to commercials. Even 20 years after he started directing, I look at ads and think, ‘that’s Frank-influenced’. He’s very focused, very contemplative, very enquiring, with great technical know-how. And he’s got an ability to forget about the pressure of a situation, and just concentrate on the performance of the actor and what makes the ad better. He just has this amazing ability to concentrate on what really matters.

The above is an edited transcript from a filmed interview by D&AD. See the final film on the CR iPad App


‘Maverick’ is an over used word in the advertising business, but Tony Kaye is the genuine article.From his days as an art director at CDP and Lowe Howard-Spink (he once pursued Frank Lowe down to the South of France to get some Heineken poster artwork approved), to his early years as a director making films for Krups and Stork, to the glorious heyday of Volvo, Dunlop, Olympus and Reebok, he has promoted himself outrageously, thought the unthinkable, said the unsayable and filmed the unfilmable.

He has (allegedly), burned down city blocks, shot hundreds of miles of film, confiscated materials when the agency had the temerity to request changes in the edit and made some of the most memorable and awarded commercials of all time. And that’s just his advertising career….

01 Frank Budgen
01 Tony Kaye
03 Hugh Hudson
04 Jonathan Glazier
05 Alan Parker
06 Roger Woodburn
07 Chris Cunningham
08 Tom Kuntz
09 Michel Gondry
09 Chris Palmer

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