What’s the most creative advertising idea you’ve seen recently?

I mean, you have to tip your hat to Mattel for the sheer audacity of approaching Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumbach to write them a feature-length Barbie advert. In a more traditional commercials space, I always enjoy Specsavers’ spots and their relentless devotion to ‘Should’ve gone to…’ which, like most jokes, just gets funnier the harder they commit. Honourable mention to the recent RuPaul’s Werq The World billboard in Times Square, which drew attention to attacks on LBGTQIA+ rights in a witty and provocative way. A huge painting of the founding fathers emblazoned, in hot pink type, with the message: ‘The Declaration of Independence was written by men in wigs, heels and tights’. 

What website(s) do you use most regularly?

The Guardian, The New Yorker and Pitchfork, because I live in Hackney and have a beard. 

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

My wife and I got very excited by the fabric shaver that arrived yesterday. It de-bobbled my woolly jumpers like nobody’s business. Absolute game-changer 

What product could you not live without?

Too soon to say the fabric shaver? Probably, so let’s go with an old faithful instead. Two words: toaster tongs.  

What’s the best film you’ve seen over the last year?

All That Jazz, which is a refreshingly mad, flawed, pulsating masterpiece. 

What film do you think everyone should have seen?

Well, just in case the head of acquisitions at a major streaming network is reading, I’ll mention Elaine May’s The Heartbreak Kid, which is the greatest film of all time and is, for some reason, unavailable in the UK. But I think everyone should watch Michael Apted’s 7 Up series (most recently 63 Up). It’s both a warning of how short life is, and a celebration of how much can be done with the time you have. 

What’s your preferred social media platform?

I’m a social media refusenik. As a D-list celebrity, I would have a handful of followers, and I’m not sure I could hack the pressure.  

What’s your favourite TV show?

Such Brave Girls, solely down to the direction. I’m not sure who directed it, but it’s clear they have a unique skillset and visionary sensibility that would transfer well to the advertising world. 

What’s your favourite podcast?

My kids are currently obsessed with Short & Curly, an Australian ethics podcast, which I’d heartily recommend. Also Jon Ronson’s Things Fell Apart.

If you could only listen to one music artist from now on, who would it be?

If I’m allowed his production work as well, then it has to be Brian Eno, for the variety and consistency of that back catalogue.

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

More voiceover work for aging sitcom stars? Nah, I’m a newbie, so it would be a bit rich for me to come wading in dukes up. I’ll report back in a year or two.  

Who or what has most influenced your career?

Well, I hope they don’t subscribe to shots because I’ll never hear the end of it, but Iain Morris [below, far left] and Damon Beesley [below right]. I met them when they were joke-writers on a failing radio show and, within eight years, they had written, directed and produced three Inbetweeners series and two Inbetweeners movies. I guess they taught me that you can make your own luck in this industry, and that you needn’t have gone to film school to have a vision and bring it to life.                 

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

I’m a qualified football referee.