Bruce Bildsten, creative director/executive producer, Geisel Productions: Power List 2017

2017 rank: 47

Film is increasingly becoming the milieu of choice for brands to tell their stories and the art is being elevated by a breed of filmmakers who are transferring their creativity across from more traditional forms of advertising and cinema.

Many of the best operators in this space came out of advertising and are reappearing in production shops specializing in cinematic storytelling — former Fallon creative director Bruce Bildsten is one such example.

In terms of brand films, Bildsten came to prominence in 2001 when he was at Fallon and worked on The Hire, a groundbreaking series of eight online films for BMW starring then-little-known actor Clive Owen and directed by luminaries such as Guy Ritchie, John Woo, Ang Lee, and John Frankenheimer.

Generally regarded as a milestone in the history of branded film, Bildsten helped create the idea and worked on the scripts for the 8-10 minute episodes.

Bildsten teamed up with Brian DiLorenzo and David Carter as Geisel Productions 15 years later in October last year to create a follow-up called The Escape, again starring Owen.

Geisel did the strategy and conceived, wrote, and produced the film and surrounding content. It hired Anonymous Content to produce The Escape, a role it also played on the original BMW brand films. Geisel worked hand in hand with Steve Golin, Eric Stern, and staff at Anonymous.

Last year, Anonymous also produced Lifeline, a psychological thriller written and directed by Birdman Oscar winner Armando Bo for wireless telecoms company Qualcomm.

* An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Bildsten was an executive producer at Anonymous Content. Bildsten actually works at Geisel Productions and hired Anonymous to produce The Escape.

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