Award-winning director Mark Romanek crosses adeptly between commercials, music videos and feature films. His always-memorable work has gained critical acclaim across the advertising and entertainment worlds.Among Romanek’s commercials are campaigns for high-profile global brands such as Samsung, Apple, AmEx, Nike, ESPN, Heineken, Honda and Acura. His recent work includes a humorous Nike spot featuring the Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman; Taylor Swift’s playful, dance-driven video for “Shake It Off”; Samsung’s acclaimed 3-minute ad for Jay Z’s album Magna Carta Holy Grail; and the Grammy-nominated music video for Magna Carta’s “Picasso Baby,” a heralded performance art film Romanek shot over six hours at New York’s Pace Gallery. He also directed U2’s “Invisible,” which debuted as a :60 promo during the Super Bowl offering a free iTunes download. For the first 24 hours, all downloads received a $1 donation from Bank of America to benefit (RED).
Romanek is known to direct commercials that turn into viral sensations, such as the Call of Duty: Ghosts “Masked Warriors” teaser trailer (over 11 million hits), and Samsung’s “LeBron’s Day,” which reached over 40 million views on YouTube. Both ads are via agency 72andSunny. His Nike “Voices” ad (W+K Portland) was praised for its recognition of the 20th anniversary of Title IX landmark legislation for women in sports, and won both a Cannes Lion and AICP honor; and his Kia More Soul (David & Goliath) was called “the best Kia ad ever” by Huffington Post.
Other commercial highlights include Dodge Charger’s humorous Super Bowl spot “Man’s Last Stand,” and Nike’s “Chalk,” a cult classic depicting the joy LeBron James’ inspires on- and off-court, both via W+K Portland; and now iconic Apple spots from the iPod/iTunes silhouette campaign, as well as spots for Nano, Apple TV and Apple iPhone, all out of TBWA/Chiat/Day Media Arts Lab.
Romanek has directed 2 critically acclaimed feature films. Never Let Me Go, based on Kazuo Ishiguro’s best-selling novel, starring Carey Mulligan, Andrew Garfield and Keira Knightley. His debut feature (which Romanek both wrote and directed) was the psychological thriller One Hour Photo, starring Robin Williams.
Romanek has directed music videos across various genres for Nine Inch Nails, Johnny Cash, Janet Jackson, Jay Z, Lenny Kravitz, Madonna, Mick Jagger, Red Hot Chili Peppers and R.E.M., to name only a few artists. His stellar contributions to music video as an art form were recognized with inclusion in the Spectacle: The Music Video exhibition at New York’s Museum of the Moving Image. His promo for NIN’s “Hurt,” performed by Johnny Cash, received the highest form of compliment with praise from other artists, including Bono, Michael Stipe and Anthony Kiedis. “Hurt” was honored with a Grammy for Best Short Form Music Video and the CMA Video of the Year.
Romanek’s music videos have also received over 20 MTV VMAs, 2 additional Grammy Awards and 3 Billboard Music Awards. MTV awarded Romanek a Video Vanguard Award for his overall contribution to the medium, and 2 of his videos—Madonna’s “Bedtime Story” and NIN’s “Closer”—are part of the permanent collection at the Museum of Modern Art in New York