- Wednesday, Sep. 17, 2014
Director Julian Farino (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Newsroom, Entourage) returned to the documentary genre this month with "21 Up: New Generation," the third installment of his ongoing BBC series following 14 participants and filmed at seven year intervals. The overall project is a follow up to the famed Up series directed by Michael Apted (that iteration was most recently broadcast in 2012 with 56Up). Farino’s first installment, 7Up 2000, aired to coincide with the millennium. Like the original, it began with its subjects at seven years old.
Farino brings a unique filmmaking perspective to "21Up," which is geared toward British viewers and centers around issues and lives in his native UK: he has directed countless Television projects for American audiences, beginning with HBO’s Sex and the City, and spanning the genre spectrum. “The British tendency toward grounded stories and the American magic dust of Hollywood is a brilliant combination,” he said. “Entourage, for example, was about friendship and grounded in the history of these guys transplanted into a dreamlike environment.”
Ultimately, Farino said, storytelling is universal, a notion he applies to his work in TV and now in commercials, via RECOMMENDED. “(Company principals) Steve DicksteinJeff Rohrer and I did a couple of projects together, a good relationship and a very good experience,” the director recalled of his ads for Samsung via 72 and sunny, and Atkins via Lowe Campbell Ewald starring Sharon Osborne). “In a hurly burly world of pitching and so forth, I like the clarity RECOMMENDED delivers and I felt very well covered in what hadn’t been my world. If you get on with people it’s a great help, and we immediately established an enjoyably idiosyncratic relationship.”
In addition to 21Up, Farino recently completed the film Marvellous, starring Toby Jones (The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, The Girl), which debuts on British television later this month.
Reviewing Farino’s continuation of Apted’s noted legacy, the Telegraph wrote: “It takes a certain audacity to commit to a string of documentaries focusing on a group of strangers, to be produced every seven years....Thankfully, '21 Up: New Generation' demonstrated that this was a gamble worth taking.” For the director, however, the most meaningful words came from Apted himself. “I received a lovely note from Michael saying ‘Prepare yourself for a lifetime’s work.’” Indeed. In addition to spot and TV projects, Farino is looking ahead to 28Up which begins shooting...in just under seven years.
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About Julian Farino
Julian Farino has directed in the UK since 1997, including an adaptation of Charles Dickens Our Mutual Friend which won 4 BAFTAs including Best Drama. Farino went on to direct and produce several television series in the United States starting in 2004. He began working on American television series with HBO, with two episodes in the last season of the HBO series Sex and the City. Farino later became a producer and a regular series director on the network’s Entourage, for which he received several Emmy® nominations. Farino continued his relationship with the network on the series Big Love and Rome, and was an executive producer and regular series director on How to Make It in America for its two seasons.
In addition to "21Up" New Generation and Marvellous, Farino recently completed the feature film The Oranges with Hugh Laurie. His other television credits include Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Hello Ladies,The Newsroom, and The Office.
Farino lives mostly in London with his wife, actress Branka Katic and two sons Louis and Joe.