From art to ads and back again

Advertising has long offered a clear pathway into the world of movies; a way for directors to cut their teeth before creating longer form work. Which is why Saatchi & Saatchi is helping young talent onto ad pitch lists, explains CCO Franki Goodwin

The Saatchi & Saatchi New Creators’ Showcase has been giving a platform to emerging and unsigned talent since 1991. Its alumni include Jonathan Glazer, Danny Kleinman, and more recently Molly Burdett, who has directed spots for TfL and the British Heart Foundation since featuring in the 2022 showcase.

And this year The Daniels won best picture at the Oscars, having been showcased in 2011. Now, I’m not suggesting that Saatchi & Saatchi deserved a mention in the acceptance speech. But maybe, just maybe, Weetabix (the brand the duo made their first ad for) should’ve got one.

The path from ads to features used to be ‘a thing’. In the 60s and 70s Alan Parker and Ridley Scott were fresh working-class voices in a sea of film industry silver spoons. Their craft was honed and their creative lives sustained by their ad work, which meant they could afford the long and protracted road to making features. But somewhere along the way the film industry trended away from ad-makers.