EightVFX has bolstered its management team with the appointment of Ashley Ford as Executive Producer. In her new role, she will oversee bidding and incoming productions as well as new and existing relationships with directors and production companies. With her deep expertise in business development and sales, she will also helm bringing in new talent and productions companies the studio reveres and is keen to collaborate with across commercial, feature film, music video, and AR projects. Renown for its visual effects and finishing work on campaigns for brands like Apple, Audi, and Nike, as well as entertainment properties like Netflix’s “Stranger Things,” Fox’s “The Orville,” and the Academy Award nominated film “I, Tonya,” EightVFX’s tapping of Ford supports its elevation across advertising and entertainment media.
With a diverse and rich background in both the production and post-production industries, Ford joins the award-winning Santa Monica-based VFX, design & animation studio following a successful run of repping an array of acclaimed talent and heading her own company, Friends of Ford, where her roster included Stept Studios, Good Company, Flavor, London Alley, and Nylon Studios to name a few.
Commenting on Ford’s hire, EightVFX Founder and Managing Director Baptiste Andrieux says, “In these delicate times, having Ashley join on to support in leading the team at EightVFX is inspiring. Ashley’s depth of knowledge, exceptional rolodex of relationships, and creative instincts are a few of the many reasons why she’s the perfect person to help lead and shape the next chapter of the company.”
“My co-founder Jean-Marc Demmer and I feel fortunate to be joining forces with her as we look at the future and accelerate into the next phase together. Ashley is well-known and respected by so many creatives in the business, and she’s such an excellent champion of each and every VFX artist in our house which will serve to grow and expand our footprint even further in our industry space.”
“I’m so elated to be joining the EightVFX family. Every single person at this company is so incredibly smart and talented. What’s especially inspiring is how much the people here genuinely love what they do and how it shows through in their work,” shares Ford. “After meeting Baptiste & Jean-Marc, I knew the amazing opportunity afforded to me in getting to work with the two of them and their extraordinary VFX storytelling talent.”
Mindful of the impact COVID-19 has had on the production world, Ford explains, “We are in a very unique time in our industry. I find myself thinking over and over how to approach this whole situation with clients, colleagues, bosses and our families. Every single level of society and business is being affected dramatically and we must be sensitive. As a vendor, we can’t truly project what’s to come workwise. How does one plan for that? I believe this is a time for brands of companies to create everlasting moments and be remembered forever. As a creative industry, we have the ability to help shape businesses moving forward through critical and forward thinking. This only pushes our industry by challenging ourselves to be more creative and fuel the passion. This quarantine could also give work life balance a whole new level of understanding once this is all over.”
Over her tenure in the production industry, Ford has collaborated with a plethora of renowned talent and brands on notable projects such as Muse Agency’s Wells Fargo campaign by Nylon Studios’ Warren Fischer and TBWA\Chiat\Day’s Gatorade campaign by London Alley’s Hannah Lux Davis. Other client business wins have included collabs for Stept Studios and Reddit, Hecho Studios as well as Nylon Studios for LG, and an AR project for AT&T by TBWA\Chiat\Day.
Ford climbed the production ranks by beginning her career as a Junior Producer at Rock Paper Scissors before transitioning to the sales side at Siobhan McCafferty & Associates, repping a roster that included Bob Industries, Untitled, Humble, Thomas Thomas Films, Luma Pictures, Lost Planet Editorial and Pacific Rim Films. She handled Business Development for Integrated Advertising at Framestore where she had a significant hand in their growth, bringing in new business from agencies and accounts like 72andSunny (Target, Activision, Call of Duty) and Deutsch (Taco Bell) before launching her own company, Friends of Ford. Prior to her new post as Executive Producer at EightVFX, she was EP at Universal Music Group’s ELIAS.
Ford adds, “Having been a sales rep, the move to EP is on par with the next vertical move I wanted to make in my production career. Working in that position for so long, you develop a great repertoire with people and learn about all the ins and outs of every department from conception to delivery. It’s essential to know what every person on a production does – to keep tabs and put the puzzle pieces together so that a project runs seamlessly until it’s delivered.”
VFX and finishing is always the last step in a production, so this role seemed like such a natural fit. From beginning to end, I know how all those pieces flow together so that familiarity naturally comes in handy in a role like this. Utilizing my sales skill-set and making that transition over to executive producing seemed like an organic step. To also be able to prove myself, to have Baptiste and Jean-Marc believe in me, and to take a company that has been succeeding to the next level and see where we can go with the changing landscape of this industry is all very exhilarating. I’m especially delighted to utilize the vast connections I’ve acquired over my decade in this business to achieve the goals we have in mind to elevate our talent offerings and post-production capabilities to clients new and forthcoming.”
This year alone, Ford has already worked with talent & productions including TBWA\Chiat\Day NY’s Nissan “Refuse to Compromise” spots directed by Minted Content’s David Leitch and Dan Gifford, Leo Burnett Detroit’s Cadillac “Make Your Way” campaign also directed by Leitch, Liquid Advertising’s Fuser promo for Harmonix directed by Pulse Films’ Ben Mor, and Goodby Silverstein & Partners’ Panera Bread “Unlimited Coffee” ads by MJZ’s Craig Gillespie. Other projects she has collaborated on included EightVFX’s productions for Taco Bell, Harman Khardon, and Verizon’s 5G AR Dome Experience at this year’s Super Bowl.
“I am so excited to be here and honored to be working with such a high caliber of visual effects artists and producers. I also love what a little United Nations it is here at EightVFX,” reveals Ford. “This company stands for everything I believe in: diversity in culture and championing excellence in creativity from a variety of global talent. I’m so proud to be joining a company that equally values both people and the work.”