Director / VFX Supervisor
Since his childhood Gianfranco developed a frenzied love for moving images, music and every form of art. He approached CG and traditional animation during high school, creating virtual worlds on a personal computer or stop motion films with a super 8 camera.
In 1995 he enrolled at the Milan Polytechnic University to get a Degree in New Media Design.
Gianfranco started his professional career as a VFX artist in Milan in 1999.
He was only 22 years old when he got hired by Digitalia Graphics, one of the best post production studios in Italy, where he worked on many feature films and commercials, including
“Teeth” (dir. Gabriele Salvatores), “C’era un cinese in coma” (dir. Carlo Verdone), Come quando
fuori piove (dir. Mario Monicelli), “I cavalieri che fecero l’impresa” (dir. Pupi Avati), “Il partigiano
Johnny” (dir.Guido Chiesa) and many more.
In 2003 he founded a production and post-production company (Abstract:Groove) with Luigi Pane.
During that time Gianfranco learned a lot about writing, directing, producing and editing. He worked mainly on music promos and fashion films for famous italian brands like Diesel, Gianfranco Ferrè, Gas Jeans, Replay and Morellato.
Then in 2007 Gianfranco decided to move to London, looking for bigger challenges and a breakthrough in his directing career.
He found a job at Cinesite in London and worked on the VFX Oscar winner “The Golden Compass” (dir. Chris Weitz), “Hellboy 2” (dir. Guillermo del Toro), “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” (dir. Raja Gosnell) and “Bedtime stories” (dir. Adam Shankman).
At the same time he has written, produced and directed some spec commercials, using his alter
ego identity: Director Kobayashi.
Thanks to these spec works he got signed by Stink Digital (London), Wanted Films (London),
From A to Zed (Italy) and PTT Films (Istanbul).
In 2010 Gianfranco moved back to Italy and founded Director Kobayashi Srl with his partner Simona Dressino. From that moment he started directing international commercials for brands like Sony, Unilever, Pampers, Toyota, Yamaha, ING Bank and Pespi.
In 2011 he wanted to cut his teeth on feature length film-making, so he directed and produced a
micro budget feature film titled “Weightless”. That experience was a kind of on field training, comparable to the spec commercials he made to become an advertising director.
Gianfranco worked on “Weightless” only on his spare time, with no compensation, purely fueled by his passion for cinema. The film was completed in 2013, but never got distributed.
Thanks to that project Gianfranco got skilled and confident enough to take on a new quest:
“Solo per il weekend”. In January 2014 Gianfranco started writing the film with Giacomo Berdini.
At the same time he secured the required funding from many different private investors.
In May 2014 Indiana Production Company jumped on board to co-produce the film with him.
Marco Cohen (one of Indiana’s partners) was immediately supportive and helped Gianfranco in gathering an amazing cast and crew, getting through all the required legal procedures and specially getting a distribution deal before shooting the film.
Gianfranco spent many months developing a storyboard of the entire film and nailing down all the art direction during the pre-production stage.
"Solo per il Weekend" has been completed in July 2015 and will have its world premiere during the Montreal World Film Festival in September 2015.
The film is due to be released in Italy at the end of 2015.
Right now Gianfranco is represented by Hudy Group (Sweden), Indie Artist Agency (Germany) and Roberto Minutillo (Italy).
Press and Awards:
Gianfranco has been a key speaker at Offf and the Kuala Lumpur Design Week.
His work has been featured in many well-known design and advertising magazines and blogs (Computer Arts, IdN, 3D World, CG Plus, Kult, GoMotion Magazine, Shots, Boards, Stash, Brand Republic, Adweek Talent Gallery, Fubiz, Pantone Gallery, Design Taxi, etc.)
2006 - Italian Videoclip Awards - Best Editing with “Go Down” - Housekeepers (Milan - Italy)
2008 - Finalist at “Cut and Paste” contest (Milan - Italy)
2009 - Digital Artist Award - for Sony Bravia “Play Doh London” Spec (London - UK)
2014 - Young Innovative Entrepreneur Award (Brescia - Italy)