Noted comedy director Barton Landsman has done spot work for ESPN, Sony, Anheuser Busch, McDonalds, Taco Bell, AT&T, and FedEx, among others, runs the gamut from observational to larger-than-life humor. Regardless of stylistic considerations, Landsman clearly has a knack for shining a light on human eccentricities: a current Avocados From Mexico campaign (Arnold/Boston), for example, depicts a soccer mom whose loyalty to her child comes up against an insatiable passion for avocado wraps. Recent work also includes a Gorilla Glue campaign (Possible/Cincinnati). Landsman has won multiple Cannes Lions and other honors for his accomplishments both as a director and agency creative. He served as Creative Director/Copywriter at BBDO New York and ACD/Copywriter at Kirshenbaum and Bond before stepping behind the camera.
Landsman began as an agency copywriter in Chicago. Writing and creative-directing jobs eventually took him to San Francisco and New York City. His work was recognized by several national and international award shows and he won multiple Cannes Lions and One Show pencils for his work on Pepsi, Dreyer’s Ice Cream, Frito Lay and more. Landsman next tried his hand at directing. Again, his work garnered national and international awards, including a Gold Lion at Cannes for Nestle “Zoo” (Lowe Strateus/Paris). Indulging his interest in darker comedy, Landsman wrote and directed Banana Bread, a short film about a man whose neurotic mother has no idea how dangerous his job really is. The film screened at more than 50 festivals throughout the country, winning numerous awards.
“I appreciate comedy built on an element of truth, but sometimes flat-out freaky or strange works nicely too,” said Landsman, who considers Portman Group “Drunken Monkey” (M&C Saatchi/London) an all-time favorite among the spots he’s directed. “I try not to impose one specific sensibility on the work, and let the script guide me.” Of longer-form branded work, such as a client-direct Web film he recently directed for the Reluctant Trading Experiment, Landsman said, “It’s fun to tell stories in 30 or 60 seconds. But if some company wants to do longer pieces like the classic BMW Film stuff, I’ll probably start weeping with joy.”