Putting ads in the Sistine Chapel with The Jack Stupid
Meet the Impolite Team: ‘The Jack Stupid’ is a creative studio established in 2012 as a collaboration between Matteo Di Gioia, an Italian director and musician, and Luis Felipe Bueno, a Brazilian designer and animator, both restless and curious with a passion for words and images.’
I think that I’ve read this sentence “passion for images” so many times that I just told Matteo, “Dude, let’s have a proper interview, there is so much more stuff to say and we need to present you as members of Impolite, I mean we need something official” and here we are!
What’s at the core of your productions? Where do you specialise?
And for how long have you guys been doing this?
The Jack Stupid is a creative studio.
We fill our days with film, design and music.
We worship enthusiasm, fun and beauty.
What is the meaning of “Creative Studio”?
It is a studio, so it lives on our work, like a workshop,
and it is creative because it makes things
which were not there before.
Can you tell me something more about the two of you? Who you are and where did you meet?
I met Luis, my partner, in the design faculty of Politecnico, Milan.
He was a Brazilian weirdo and I was a wannabe rockstar.
Soon enough we joined forces, driven by the passion for bubbles and itchy things. Also, we knew we sucked at industrial design. We just cared about the tale behind the product, not the product itself.
Once we were done with our studies, we founded TJS after a brief period of work in separate studios, where we learned how not responsible we wanted to be as grown-ups.
Luis is a designer and an animator, I am more of a musician and a director, but there are no strict roles.
You are also a rockstar, Mat! But like, for real! How come?
I’m more of a budget-rockstar for the moment. But I dive on people at live shows, yes.
I play around the world with my band, Destrage, and I think my music has a strong relationship with our work at TJS. Both aesthetically and business-wise. We were even invited to Valentino for a presentation because a creative there is a Destrage fan. How weird.
Ahaha! That’s cool!
Her name is Valentina. Go figure.
That’s how our story with the Valentino brand started. Of course, she said to her colleagues that she found us on LinkedIn, but we all know that’s a lie. There’s nothing about us on LinkedIn!
They took a look at our portfolio and decided to try us on a small project. Since that went alright, we were invited to pitches for bigger projects.
This story makes you guys the most rock and roll growth-hackers of the advertising industry! Amazing!
What did they say about the name ‘The Jack Stupid’? And where does it come from?
Let me just hide under our carpet of shame. This is gonna be totally lame, but stay with us here -
It comes from a Destrage song that goes: “Everybody wants to be the King, but they don’t know the King is fat and old. The Queen tiptoes to the Jack, stupid”
So the adjective “stupid” is addressed to the reader. But nobody knows that.
Half our clients call us ‘Jack The Stupid’… Fuck that!
So the name is an ironic scream for small realities like us, that can beat the Kings of the industry. Or, have a round with their Queens whilst they sleep.
Ahem… Whilst the King is asleep.
Ahaha! I still remember once pitching you to a client. He started laughing and then he went “Come on guys, you gotta be kidding me”… Nope!
Yes I can imagine! We thought about changing the name a bunch of times, but hey, if you go silly you gotta take responsibility for it.
Never change it, please!!
Let’s go back to the main topic. You are an award-winning studio, Corneliani’s work is an example of crazy thinking and extreme attention to details. What was the approach there? Guide us through the process.
After we did a project for Valentino, its art director Pablo Arroyo presented us to Corneliani, a brand he was trying to rejuvenate.
He said: “We need you guys, coz in five years time Corneliani’s best buyers will be dead. We need to catch their sons.”
So he gave us this 60 second animation, a bunch of outfits to show and a do-whatever-good-luck-boys wish.
From that moment, we had three weeks to complete the project. Not much time for a small studio.
We presented a moodboard right away, with text description and style frames, most of which remained definitive and made it into the final film, and Anna Resmini, renowned illustrator, gave us her magic-touch from the beginning.
Pablo gave us his full trust and willingly pushed our view to the brand, which was happy to experiment a little. It was a very rare and desirable scenario.
You won the London Film Festival and got nominated for other awards. The video is unique and also the distribution was unique…
We also won 4 awards in Miami Fashion Film Festival! My favorite is “Best Concept”, which is something that often goes unseen.
“Best Creative Concept”
The distribution was interesting. The brand decided to ditch on doing a catwalk and instead mailed 750 iPads with four films and complete lookbook to journalists, distributors and clients.
You definitely must be crazy somehow, in order to come up with those sceneries and build up this kind of storytelling and visual language. It’s insane. How the fuck do you guys come up with those ideas?
Ahahaha, thank you!
I guess by trying.
Sometimes, courage pays.
Do you think that there is a difference between creating advertising and movies right now?
I personally think that everything made on commission is advertising.
I don’t want to be blasphemous, but masterpieces, such as the Sistine Chapel, were made on commission and it is still one of the most beautiful and impressive works of art in Europe.
But I don’t think that Michelangelo would paint Angels and Marie’s, if nobody paid him to do so.
Love the analogy. Maybe we are all little Michelangelos, or maybe Warhols?
It’s comforting to think so. As big as they used to be, they still had to bend to the will of their clients. And that is an art too.
And hey, without clients, hardly anything happens.
Couldn’t agree more.
Let’s talk about one of your personal projects: Testa di Morto is on Nowness right now and it’s a short movie about a person with a very peculiar habit. Is that you for real, Mat? Are you seriously that fucked up?
When we first met him, what caught me first was his voice.That lazy, stoned tone, dressing up punctual adjectives and flawless, logical concepts like a glaze. I had the feeling he mastered language like how some learn the procedure for escaping a natural calamity. A protocol to efficiently respond to the outside. An outside that he rather prefers silent.
And that is him. A 24 year old student breeding butterflies to pay for his studies.
How’s the ecosystem in Milan and how likely do you get the chance to work around Europe?
Milan offers a lot of work of many kinds, so it is easy to just sit in your chair. But lately, I enjoy traveling for work. We went to Ireland to shoot a fashion film and we travel to Switzerland regularly to film ski athletes and girls in bikinis, freezing their smiles in -15°C.
A couples of nights ago, I was editing work which was shot partly in China and Milan, but I didn’t have the chance to travel there yet.
The production is Chinese. As absurd as it sounds, they sent a drone here, dressed up to look like a red phoenix with a golden crown to deliver a dress to a Chinese superstar in Milan.
They needed me in the end, coz the drone couldn’t fly and the dress got lost on a train.
Ahaha! Were you the phoenix with the red dress?
I was their flesh-mouse remote.
Everybody in the office laughs at me now.
It’s not only the ugliest work I have ever made, it is also the goofiest thing I have ever seen.
Salesy question warning: how did you get in touch with Impolite and how does it feel to be in? Ahah! Sounds like the last question for Miss America…
Ahahah, yes… Well, like all the best things, it happened by chance. A few years ago, I was in Berlin to chase a girl, and she didn’t have internet at her place, so I went to a bar with my laptop. Sitting beside me, there was this Lorenzo guy, with sparkling eyes in love with this city.
I believe he saw some animation on my screen that I was working on and we started to chat. He told me about this ‘Fucking Amazing’ work, still to be done at the time, and we became friends.
It feels great to be aboard because I think Berlin is the greatest place in Europe. If it wasn’t for my band, I wouldn’t go back to Milan.
And Impolite shares a lot of values-non-values with TJS!
You are the first person who says that I have sparkling eyes! I take it as a BIG compliment!
Long lashes, too.
Mat, thank you so much. You have the possibility here to do some name-dropping or to write down some keywords that are going to be much appreciated for SEO! What would you write down?
Ah shit, I suck at that. I’m good at rambling.
Animation, film, live action, creativity, dare, trick or dare, Valentino, Corneliani, WindTre, Diesel, Moschino, Frog, Yamaha Motors, Allianz, Bulgari…
Impolite: an agency with (actual) personality
We are a house of movie production professionals and digital media innovators working with brave brands and influencers to create unique video experiences. If you are curious to grow your brand You can contact me via firstname.lastname@example.org