Director Greg Popp Joins Backyard
June 13, 2019 by Screenmag
Director Greg Popp has joined Backyard’s roster bringing his seasoned comedy and performance skills to the team. Greg and Backyard CMO, Roy Skillicorn, have had a working relationship and strong friendship for over twenty-five years, having first worked together when Greg began at DDB. Greg went on to become a Senior Vice President before embarking on a successful directing career. His ground breaking and intensely funny work for Head and Shoulders, Burger King and Anheuser-Busch secured attention from the community. Greg’s most recent work for Atlantic Union Bank follows suit, once again tapping into undeniably viral humor.
Skillicorn rejoined Backyard last year under its new ownership with a mandate to expand the roster. Roy had Greg in mind from the start to sign him. Skillicorn describes the breadth of Greg’s work as “bridging many established boundaries of comedy: from subtle to broad, from simple visual gags to complex clever dialogue, often involving celebrities or top sports personalities. Greg gets performances that are so well crafted that they simply demand a response from the viewer; whether it's a hearty laugh, a smile or just a thought provoking grin.” “I find this magic in all of his work,” adds Skillicorn.
Backyard EPs, Kris Mathur and Emily Malito, are equally excited to start working with Greg, whose comedy chops, optimism and natural instincts combine to serve as a perfect corner stone to the roster. “To describe Greg as just a comedy director is limiting. Greg is a true comedic storyteller, incredibly intuitive and hardworking. He enjoys directing big productions like we do, but he is also more than willing to consider and offer up solutions for projects that are creatively interesting, yet financially challenging. Greg's agency background helps him create a highly collaborative environment on set, which is evidenced by a high volume of repeat business,” asserts Mathur.
Backyard has a long history of establishing and elevating numerous comedy directors, which is in part what drew Popp to this team. “Backyard has been a go-to production entity for humor work since Roy founded it,” noted Popp. “I have always admired their culture, familial atmosphere, business acumen, aggressive sales and marketing, and insistence on high-quality production. Everything about Backyard’s promotional strategies, sales teams, and EP/production support is what has drawn me to them again today.”
Backyard CEO, Kevin Allodi, adds, “Greg is the consummate pro -- his attitude, attention to detail and genuine enthusiasm toward his work is contagious. I love that he is so buttoned up; when a director is that together going into a shoot, it allows space and time for intuitive artistry to emerge on the spur of the moment…precisely what it takes to elevate the work to award winning levels. We’re delighted to have Greg at Backyard and look forward to seeing him flourish here.” At press time Greg has just confirmed his fifth celebrity driven Head & Shoulders project with Saatchi & Saatchi NY.