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On My Radar: Mischa Rozema

On My Radar: Mischa Rozema

Crowd-surfer extraordinaire, rad dad and avid Pinner, the Nexus director avoids the status quo and wishes the ad industry could keep up with the rest of the world.

What’s the best ad campaign you’ve seen recently?

Anything Spike Jonze touches is genius work. I’m a sucker for directors with their own visual language. Probably too old for the question, but I think my ideal ad would look something like Christopher Hewitt’s Dunlop Forever Forward. Incredibly immersive and emotional. A great example of visuals, sound and pace meeting in the sweetest spot. 



What website(s) do you use most regularly and why? 

I can get lost for days on Pinterest. I know there’s a hoarder in me. I curate everything that somehow triggers me. I get inspired by lost pictures, unfinished sketches or just random artwork, anything that has an idea. That’s the reason I don’t see a lot of ads, music vids or even films, because they’re the finished product. I can enjoy them as a consumer. But as a director I can only say: F***! I wish I’d made that!




What’s the most recent piece of tech that you’ve bought and why? 

Not into gadgets at all. Used to be though. In the old days I was a control freak and wanted to literally do every step of the film process myself, which meant staying up to date with technological developments. Over the years I’ve learned to distance myself from most of this. I literally dumbed myself down and focused on writing and drawing my ideas and giving them to people with way more expertise. So my main gadget nowadays is my notebook. I did treat myself to a small Leica camera with the least amount of controls, though.



Facebook, Instagram or Twitter?



What’s your favourite app on your phone and why?

Shotgun. Keeps me up to date with our post-production department in Amsterdam. Even when I’m not around. 


What’s your favourite TV show and why?

I was pretty blown away by The Leftovers. Never seen such dark but human character development before on the small screen.


What film do you think everyone should have seen?

Hands down 2001: A Space Odyssey. Finally got to see the 70mm version in the theatre. Truly a timeless piece of art.



Where were you when inspiration last struck?

Airplanes are the best. Literally nowhere to go but inward. Just close my eyes. Put on my headphones with a prepped soundtrack and off we go. Biking is second best. I cycle to work whenever I can. It’s a 50-minute ride through the fields. No bends. I solve a lot of creative issues on my way to work.



What’s the most significant change you’ve witnessed in the industry since you started working in it?

The most significant change would be the world around us. If only the industry could keep up. Old networks, old methods, things could be so much more efficient.


If there was one thing you could change about the advertising industry, what would it be?

More guts, please.


What or who has most influenced your career and why? 

I think my dad and a close friend passing away at a young age has drastically altered my decision-making process. We have a limited time here, so wasting it is the last thing I want to do. This way I’m always aiming high and try to make the best choices. I find comfort not knowing where I'll live or what I’ll be doing this time next year. I just cannot imagine a status quo in my life.


Tell us one thing about yourself that most people won’t know…

A couple of months ago, my 14-year-old daughter saw me on television, stage diving next to Kurt Cobain. They aired a legendary Nirvana concert at the Paradiso in Amsterdam. Those images actually made into one of their music videos. So every now and then I see this idiot version of me in a Nirvana video. Good news is, I’m pretty rad in my daughter’s book now.



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