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Campaign Brief (AUS/NZ) Online.
Campaign Brief Magazine : July August 2008
RAPHAEL ELISHA: ONETOWATCH How many directors does it take to perform a convincing Borat impersonation? In this case, only one – Raphael Elisha. But when he’s not imitating the infamous reporter from Kazakhstan, Elisha is recognised for other not-so- sordid achievements. In June this year, he was awarded with the Cannes Lions Young Director Award for an Allianz insurance commercial. CB takes a closer look. The Allianz insurance commercial involves a sl ightly eccentric and fairly ped ant ic cha racte r named Klaus. Says Elisha: “I knew I wanted to do something with a European feel, seeing as it was going to be judged by the Commercial Film Producers Rafael Elisha of E urope, a nd t he c haracter o f Klaus seem ed the o bvious choi ce. The script simply wrote itself.” Although o nly 2 4 y ears o f a ge, Elisha is no stranger to the produc- tion world. At the ripe age of 18 he set up his own production compa- ny, Red M Studios, and dove head- firs t into the musi c vide o s cene. With no real experience behind him and o nly a v ague idea of th e pr o- duction process, Elisha had to learn on the job. “I’d talked my way on to the set of this R‘n’B music video, with a crew of twenty, and r ealised t hat I had no id ea wh at t o d o h aving n ever done i t before. At tha t point I s till thought t he Best Boy was simp ly the most well behaved child on set. The shoot lasted five days which is almost u nheard of, and i t’s some- thing I would never consider now… especially on a tight budget.” Luckily fo r Elisha, t hose day s of blind ambition are now behind him, with a string of awards to his name and weal th of priceless experience under his belt, he is fast becoming a seasoned p rofessional. One s uch experience oc curred i n mid 2007, when El isha wa s ta ken un der the wing of t he Guild of Commerc ial Filmmakers. Here he produced for several of Au stralia ’s high-pr ofile directors an d go t a cha nce to s ee how they play in the big leagues. “I still don’ t ev en kno w h ow i t hap- pened,” says Elisha. “I called them up, spoke to one of the producers I had m et p reviousl y, a sk ed h im ‘what h ave y ou g ot f or me?’. He said ‘a Powderfinger c lip’, I s aid ‘okay’, and before I knew i t I was sitting in a room with two of the top music video directors in the country producing a Powderfinger clip!” An entrepreneur at heart, Elisha is not one to let an opportunity go by. Having witnessed the effective structure of t he b igger production companies, he decided to e stablish his own stable of directors and has now expanded his company to four producers and six world-class direc- tors. Elisha a nd f ellow p roducer, Gabriel Ireland, have now acquired the ta lents of S ian Davies, Ki eran ‘Spud’ M urphy, John Studley, Peter S chmidt, Francois Merlet, and new-comer, Adam Ciancio. “For the moment I think I’m going to stay inside the lines of pro- ducing,” s ays Elisha. “ I do enjoy the c reative o utlet t hat d irecting provides bu t for now i t’s p robably more important t hat I g row t he business and secure food and shel- ter f or my self. Above a ll I t ry t o maintain a Cannes-do attitude.” dtfx JU L Y /AUGUST 2 008 All physical & mechanical SFX for TVC’s and Film M: 0418 669 873 W: www.dtfx.net Photography Derek Hughes www.derekhughesphotography.com.au CAM PAIGN B R I E F 43
May June 2008