Station Film’s Scott Corbett reflects on his directorial journey through commercials and his new short film, Good Night Butterfly.
Scott Corbett first came to SHOOT’s attention in 2006, earning inclusion into SHOOT’s 2006 New Directors Showcase. Fast forward to present day and Corbett, now on the Station Film roster, has a diverse body of work as a commercial director, including a Cannes Silver Lion-winning Pizza Pops campaign out of Canadian agency Cossette Communications. Recently he’s helmed campaigns for Sierra Trading Post out of Grey/NY, Würkin Stiffs for Fallon/NY, and Pier 1 from The Richards Group.
Station Film has also supported work beyond the ad arena for Corbett, producing Good Night Butterfly. Written and directed by Corbett, the short recently premiered at the Asian American International Film Festival in New York City. Corbett is no stranger to short film fare. His first directorial effort back in the day, the comedy short Small Emergencies, played the fest circuit and won a merit award at the San Francisco International Film Festival.
SHOOT: Good Night Butterfly is a big departure tonally from a lot of your commercial work such as your new films with Fallon NY for Würkin Stiffs. What drew you to the Fallon campaign?
Corbett: I liked the scripts from the start. The characterizations and the comedy were well realized on the page. They were awkward, absurd and funny. More like my earlier commercial work with Altoids and Pizza Pops. Like those, a lot of care went into making sure the absurdity was grounded in reality and played with restraint so the humor played more dry and ironic than comedic.
SHOOT: Do you prefer working in comedy or drama?
Corbett: With commercials, you typically have :30 to :60 to set it up and pay it off. So it’s perfect for comedy, whereas with film you have more time to explore characters and moods and emotions, which appeals to me as a storyteller. Commercially, I tend to like humor grounded in a filmic aesthetic. So I try to bring that to my commercial work when I can.
SHOOT: As a commercial director, what draws you to a project?
Corbett: Good writing. Scripts that are smart on the page but allow room for the director to bring something to it. I remember the first great scripts I received for a brand called Pizza Pops from Cossette Toronto. They were dark and charming and hilarious. The writing and concept were so strong I thought I had received them by mistake because I was just starting out as a director and barely had anything on my reel. I ended up getting the job and the campaign went on to win a Silver Lion at Cannes.
Read the full interview HERE.
Watch the Good Night Butterfly trailer HERE.