Debut director Sam Coleman has taken local songstress Zolani Mahola on a heady journey into a dark dreamscape in Freshlyground's latest music video. With the release of their fifth studio album, Freshlyground have moved in a direction that promises to shake up any pre-conceptions that they're strictly an afro-pop collective.
The title track (which shares the album's name) Take Me To The Dance begs, no, demands, to be played loud. The video reinforces the point, leaving zero doubt that Freshlyground is a band mature enough to march to the beat of their own drum.
Produced by Giant Films, the video takes you on a slightly twisted journey, far darker than any of the band's previous releases, without compromising any of Freshlyground's groove or charm. Using lead singer Zolani's ample talents to captivate the viewer throughout, the director weaves a wandering path through a black and white wonder-club littered with fantastical characters shooting us a heady mixture of mesmerising and suggestive expressions.
Sam hails from a remote farming area of the Eastern Cape in South Africa, where his nearest neighbours were hours away by car. Whilst studying graphic design at Cape Town's Red and Yellow School, Sam founded award winning digital agency Generator Communications with three friends. Then after a stint as Creative Director at YDE, he was headhunted by 180 Amsterdam to work on the adidas Original's 2007 global campaign, featuring hip-hop star Missy Elliot and French graffiti artist Fafi, next Sam was a lead creative launching the integrated adidas Originals global campaign Celebrate Originality in 2008.
By 2009, he was at Mother New York, working across all divisions of Mother's multi disciplinary shop from Design to Experiential working on clients from Virgin Mobile to Tanqueray Gin.
Early 2012 saw him return to South Africa, turning down a Creative Director position at Media Arts Lab (Los Angeles) renowned for their iconic work on Apple. His reason? Joining director driven production company Giant Films.
"Sam made an about turn decision, electing his home country and the Giant family to help fulfill his long time dream of launching a career in film. Barely one day in, Sam was approached by S.A household name Freshlyground to shoot their new video..." says Giant EP and founder, Cindy Gabriel.
He conceptualised, designed and directed the entire project, letting him combine his well-honed sense of concept, design and craft... he blends these with a one-of-a-kind casting, narrative performance and humor."
Of his new creative home, the debut director enthuses, "I was attracted to join Giant because of its unique character in the market place. There's a focused, selective and limited director roster, with a strongly collaborative culture and a great environment for directors to grow ideas, values and projects together".
Resembling his first film creation, the atavistic glitter boy of Take Me To The Dance, in both enthusiasm and determination, Sam Coleman's impish, irrepressible debut launches a glittering new directorial talent from Giant Films.
Giant Films continues to grow its unique crew of narrative-driven directors, with Sam joining Ian Gabriel and Robin Goode at the Giant Films front line.
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