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Ka-Chew! Opens Live-Action Punch Co.

Hollywood based ka-chew! announced the opening of Punch Co., a live-action entity for the studio. Ellen Knable will join Punch as exec producer and will oversee all national sales efforts. Knable will also run the sales and marketing efforts for ka-chew! in animation for the west and midwest. Schaffer/Rogers continue to rep ka-chew! in the east and Ann Asprodites in the south.

Punch brings together a talented group of experienced directors and producers to expand the commercial capabilities of ka-chew! Punch will incorporate viral campaigns and branding content in a new and innovative way.

Nathalie Renard, ka-chews senior producer, takes on the added responsibility of head of production. Punch adds award-winning directors Kirby Dick, Gary Johns, John Lindauer and Suzanne Luna to its stable that includes Lori Precious and Bil White.

Richard Marlis, evp of ka-chew!, said, ka-chew! has always prided itself on being able to meet the industrys ever changing landscape, whether it be in animation, design, live action or branded content. It is very important to have a distinct and clear vision of your brand. ka-chew! has a renowned reputation in animation and design but has lacked the identity for live action. The creation of Punch expands the identity of ka-chew! in the live-action area. The addition of Ellen and the new directors contribute an array of talents to an already proven team. Kirby, Gary, John and Suzanne are an incredibly gifted group of directors and we welcome them to Punch.

Knable joins the company from her own consulting firm, eka. She has managed talent, including directors, animators and commercial companies throughout her career. Fresh out of the gate, she was national sales manager/co-founder of Coppos Films and has represented an array of talented directors during her illustrious career. She successfully launched several companies, such as Green Dot Films, A Band Apart, and has extensive experience running animation, effects & music companies such as; Rhinoceros, Spontaneous, Duck Soup Produckions and Endless Noise.

Dick is an Oscar-nominated director from Los Angeles, and has directed such films as this summers THIS FILM IS NOT YET RATED, an investigation into the highly secretive MPAA film ratings system that received rave reviews after premiering at Sundance, and TWIST OF FAITH, which was nominated for the Academy Award in 2005 for Best Documentary Feature. He also directed SICK, which won the Special Jury Prize at Sundance and the Grand Prize at LA Film Festival, it also won both an IFP/West Spirit Award Nomination and an International Documentary Association Nomination for Best Feature Documentary after being released by Lions Gate Films. He co-directed DERRIDA, which won the Golden Gate Award at the SF Film Festival, and also premiered at Sundance.

Johns has won numerous major awards in advertising and commercial filmmaking, and has worked with such high profile clients such as Lexus, Nike, Coca-Cola, Adidas, AT&T, Honda, Sprint, Miller Lite, Pepsi, Apple, Reebok, Range Rover and Ford. As creative director of Chiat/Day Inc., he created internationally-acclaimed campaigns for Nike, including the famous I Love L.A. commercial and the introduction of the Air Jordan commercials. Later on Johns formed Johns+Gorman Films, a commercial production company based in Los Angeles with offices in Chicago and New York. Additionally, Johns directed a six-minute branded content dramatic film that aired during the premiere episode of 24 sponsored by Ford. He has created numerous advertising campaigns for Ford throughout his career.

Lindauer worked with Believe since 2001, directing commercials for AT&T, Kellogg, and Frosted Mini Chex, amongst others. He has just wrapped a Zicam spot for McCann Erickson/LA as his final project with Believe and also completed a spot for Chrysler through BBDO/Toronto. He won numerous awards and recognition from ADWEEK and Cannes. He began his career on radio before studying visual arts and then animation at both Harvard and Cambridge. Lindauer then began work in film and television directing segments for CBS PEE-WEES PLAYHOUSE. After moving toward commercial production, he directed spots for various clients such as: Viacom, McDonalds, Sony, General Mills, Toshiba, Samsung, Land Rover, Honda, Frito-Lay and RJR Nabisco. His work on viral projects includes creating multimedia experiences for Novellua, Kia, Ipix/Bamboo and others. In 1998, Lindauer joined Sony Pictures Imageworks as a commercial director.

Luna began her career in the theater studying acting at the famous H.B. Studios under the late Bill Hickey, and moved on to win a prestigious spot as a directing student in Wynn Handmans acting class. She has directed various original productions off Broadway. She has directed successful commercial comedic campaigns for Seattle Auditors and PartyPoker.com Currently she directs shorts for THE JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE SHOW. Luna brings a skillful casting eye and comic timing to the Punch team.

Precious has directed spots for such companies as Nickelodeon, Skechers and MTV. Additionally, she has directed numerous campaigns for the Mattel group. She began her career as vp/creative director for NBC's agency for movies and miniseries before moving to Jacobs and Gerber Advertising where she became creative director, working with CBS and Paramount Studios. Eventually she signed with Richard Marlis, exec producer at Wild Canary Prods. where she directed award-winning spots for both the commercial and entertainment industries.

White has a wide range of creative spots, incorporating a highly eclectic use of styles and techniques. Originally a motion control cameraman, White expanded his skills to directing, designing, and animating. While at ka-chew, he has directed spots for such companies as Easton, Lipton, Lands End, a main title sequence for the MTV show, PUNKD, and a viral campaign for the Newport Beach Film Festival.

Headed by Marlis, Punch (www.punchcompany.com) is the live-action entity of Hollywood based ka-chew! Punch directors have received major awards and in addition to their commercial work, they have been involved with long form including feature films and TV.

ka-chew! (www.kachew.com) has produced award-winning projects for some of the most respected networks and agencies in the industry-including on-air promotions for ABC, A&E, Discovery, and Nickelodeon, on-air design for ESPN, FOX, E! Entertainment, MTV and Nicktoons, as well as commercials spots for, Campbells, Calloway Golf, Easton, Mucinex, Keebler, Mattel, Lands End, Earthlink and more.