Neil Harris’ roots can be traced back to his studies at The Royal College of Art‘s Interior Design program. Originally beginning his career as a freelance designer in the field of exhibition design, Harris progressed to Art Direction and Production Design within the commercial industry. It wasn’t long before he ventured into directing, where Harris has explored all aspects of comedy while also turning his hand to more technically demanding projects with strong narrative elements.
Harris has continued to direct award-winning commercials worldwide and has been voted Best Director in France for two years running by Strategie magazine. In 2001 he picked up two awards at the Clios for Fiat Punto ‘Crash Test’ and for Mikado ‘Copier’. In 2003 he was included in the Gunn Report of top 25 world commercial directors, based on awards won in all major advertising festivals. In 2009 was awarded a Silver at The British Television Advertising Awards (BTAA) for his first VW Idents, to name but a few of his many honors.
Neil participated in the Staying Alive Project part of the Global Media Aids Initiative. For the initiative, he created “Shot”, one of 24 spots that were produced by agencies such as 180 Amsterdam, Cake, Lowe Worldwide, Ogilvy, Wieden + Kennedy. He has also shot spots for the UK Government / Central Office of Information (COI) for their drugs awareness body.
Harris is constantly kept busy shooting spots and campaigns for Tesco, Argos, BMW, Sony Playstation, Bud Light, and Adidas. In 2010 he directed another set of Channel 4 idents for Volkswagen in Thailand out of DDB London and he followed with a spot for the Charity Whizz Kidz, which helps get disabled children into wheel chairs. He continued with his collaboration with MTV and the Staying Alive Project directing the ‘Being With You’ commercial, which was shortlisted at the 2012 Cannes Lions for a Public Health and Safety Film Lion.
Harris has directed spots for such notable brands like Virgin Mobile, Sky, McDonalds, Birdseye, Argos, and John Hancock.