Lucky Twenty One is thrilled to welcome Sam Ketay, a director known for compelling docu-style work for commercials, brand films and other content. Ketay’s talent for bringing a real people sensibility to brand-driven storytelling has illuminated projects for Citizens Bank, Martha Stewart, Citizens Bank and Motorola.
“Sam has a great eye and ability to engage people for amazing on screen performance,” says Lucky Twenty One Executive Producer John Gilliland. “In addition to his passion and talent, Sam has worked on various production types, from full scale to nimble on location digital shoots. For those reasons and more, he’s is a natural fit for Lucky Twenty One.”
“I am honoured to be a part of Lucky Twenty One,” comments Ketay, “They are very selective about the roster and are deeply invested in building long-term relationships. Their collaborative spirit speaks to why I love this industry.”
Since 2009, Ketay has been working independently, directing, shooting and editing projects for Ogilvy and others including the Educational Alliance and Goodwill Industries. He was previously with Crossroads and represented by @radicalmedia, following graduation from Art Center College of Design. Ketay first caught the eye of the advertising industry when his film program spec spots were nominated for the Shots Best Young Director Award in Cannes; and his Budweiser spec was awarded a Clio.
An undergraduate degree in anthropology put Ketay on the path to becoming a filmmaker. During his studies at Skidmore College, he traveled through East Africa and South Asia, where experiences like living with Samburu warriors in Kenya and Tibetan refugees in Nepal inspired his interest in capturing both the beauty and absurdity of life on film. Today, in addition to his advertising driven work, Ketay collaborates on projects with renowned conceptual artist Barbara Kruger.
“You cannot travel endless hours and experience struggle without passion and heart – it just doesn’t work,” says Ketay. “I took this documentary experience and translated it into projects for brands and cause based advertising. In either instance it comes down to connecting with people authentically and applying that to storytelling.”