Secrets Of Russian Guy, Mini-Giraffe Ad Revealed

One of the best TV ads I’ve seen in a long time comes to us from Direct TV in a recent piece featuring a parody of a Russian oligarch. The :30 spot, produced by Grey Advertising Group, has officially gone viral on the web and in my head - exploding into innumerable views on Youtube and elsewhere.

Secrets of Direct TV Russian Guy, Mini-Giraffe Ad Revealed

(Actor Tim Murphy was actually kissing a metal stand)

Recently disembarked from the International Space Station? Here’s the spot:


With much of the Tube-consuming public addicted to the ad, the language-mangling Russian character’s opening line in the scene, “Opulence, I has it,” is rapidly penetrating our lexicon.

As an obsession, the more I watch, the more I want, so my only problem with the Direct TV commercial is there’s an absolute dearth of intel on the piece’s behind-the-scenes.

Secrets of Direct TV Russian Guy, Mini-Giraffe Ad Revealed

(Actor Murphy appeared at MTV VMAs in character as, “Gregor Chigal“)

I want to know every detail behind how that mini-giraffe came about, who the actor behind the Russian character is, and the scoop on the photo of the blue-shirted soccer players flanked by a man resembling an authentic oligarch, Roman Abramovich. (Incurably sick. I am.)

Thankfully, I was able to get in touch with the two-person creative team from which the entire production germinated: Jon Kallus and Luis Romero.

Jon and Lu were kind enough to submit to my series of queries about their stunning work. Read more…