Commercial/Creative director Filippos Tsapekis Strives to Create Unforgettable Content like those Awesome Super Bowl Adverts
Greek-born but US-based commercial and creative director, Filippos Tsapekis has done some big budget commercials in Europe but he casts his ambitious eyes on working on eye-opening American advertising campaigns like for the NFL’s Super Bowl. Tsapekis, who directed big budget and memorable commercials called “Thunder” and “Guru” for a giant food company, says of hopefully working on those awesome Super Bowl adverts which can cost advertisers over $5 million for a 30-second spot:
“The Super Bowl advertisements are something different, with very expensive productions and exciting ideas. It’s estimated that nearly 20 percent of Super Bowl viewers mostly tune in to catch those often funny, splashy TV ads that occur during the breaks. Those commercials always grab my attention, and I’d always want to direct spots like that.” He quips, “I enjoy them so much, I wish the Super Bowl game was longer, so there’d be more commercials.”
Indeed, Tsapekis, who has recently participated in projects for major studio companies, like Warner Brothers and Universal, as a Creative Director or Commercial Director, and Editor, says you have to be unique in this industry, adding, “I feel blessed because to have worked with great companies all these years, and I always look for opportunities to learn new things. But, you have to keep your identity and style in the end. You have to find ways to inspire others to remember you and your work.”
Most importantly, Tsapekis started his international career as a copywriter and then progressed to a creative director. Learning along the way, he has participated in more than 50 TV commercials around Europe. Additionally, he’s also earned a BA in Communication & Advertising from the American College of Greece, and an MFA in Filmmaking from the New York Film Academy.
As a result, he’s learned a variety of technical skills, including Adobe Premiere Pro, Cinetracer, Adobe After effects, Adobe Audition, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe Photoshop. Now, he sees his overall assets this way:
“My strength as a commercial director is my background as a copywriter/creative director and then my passion for commercials. I learned how to write an idea and sell it to a client, and do it well. Because you may only have only 30 seconds to deliver your message to your audience. And deliver it powerfully.”
Above all, growing up in Greece, he recalls enjoying watching commercials more than TV shows and, in his mind, trying to change the commercials he watched. He was also inspired by the rich history of his native Greece, saying, “We all read stories from ancient Greeks about Socrates, Pythagoras, Plato, and more. But today the cinema and TV industries are growing, and many big productions visit Greece for shooting, primarily because of the great weather, unique locations, and high quality of technical crews.”
As a result of his background, education and diverse work experiences, commercial/creative director Tsapekis suggests that the art of communication is crucial in the advertising/promotion world, explaining:
“In the commercial world, the overriding objective is to communicate a particular message to a specific audience in a limited time. And in preparation, you have to extensively research new trends, and also about your target audience — what are their tastes, and values? You must also watch what your competitors are doing. Above all, you have to be unique with your own style.”
However, while he gives 100 percent to every project, he admits there are some he has felt more connected with. He enthuses: “Three projects stand out for me, two commercials for an international food brand — “Thunder” and “Guru.” And, a short film, Nine to Five, which I directed and am so proud of.” Indeed, this poignant short has earned more than 35 awards and received positive reviews across multiple film festivals worldwide. Those awards include: Canada Shorts Film Festival, European Cinematography awards, Los Angeles Film Awards, New York Film Awards, Roma Cinema Doc and more. In fact, it’s available to watch via Dust TV on Apple Tv, Samsung Tv plus, Roku channel, Xumo, Vizio, IMDB Tv, Xfinity stream.
While, being a creative/commercial director is Tsapekis’s main focus, he observes that working on advertisements and films is similar: “Directing is directing. You mostly prep the same way for a TV commercial or a film. With Nine to Five, and the super team I worked with, we created something unique that touches a social issue. In this film, tiredness is illegal and has severe punishments. In our society, we hear every day of people losing their minds or suicide because they can’t deal with the pressure and criticism of the world. We live in a society where you won’t be considered socially acceptable if you don’t participate in everything, including social media, events, and jobs. So, in our film, because everyone wants to be approved by society, it’s prohibited to be tired.”
Having recently worked with Buzzfeed, Little Dot Studios, Everpost, Nurture and BlackCherry, Filippos Tsapekis looks forward to being associated with other great people, and creating unforgettable commercials and promotions.