DIRECTOR’S PROFILE: Directors Think Tank Director Hyrul Anuar

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DIRECTOR’S PROFILE: Directors Think Tank Director Hyrul Anuar

Malaysian-born and KL based Hyrul Anuar is a director at Directors Think Tank, Asia’s leading production company with offices around the region including Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. Campaign Brief Asia put 15 questions to Anuar to find out more about him and his approach to directing.


1. What’s your favorite part of the job?
Being a creative person

2. What is your most productive time of day and why?
When I was in an agency, I would like to work at night time. Because during the day time I would like to play around in the office while looking for the idea.

But since I joined production life, I spend most of my time alone at home. And I always work during day time.

3. If you didn’t have this job, what would you be doing instead?
I would be back in the ad agency as a creative. I like that job too.

4. How early did you know this would be your path?
When I was a kid, I knew that I like doing creative stuff. But when I joined the agency world, I was becoming obsessed with creativity, because creativity doesn’t have limitation in discipline to express what I want to say and express.

5. Can you name some recent jobs?
Maxis Zerolution & Goto (Gojek & Tokopedia) Bangkit Bersama.

6. Do you put on a different hat when shooting for a specific genre?
Not really. I can’t runaway from comedy.

7. Have you been continuing to shoot during the COVID crisis? Can you describe that experience?
Yea, I think that the most creative period in my life. Because I need to write and execute with a lot of limitation.

8. Do you have a favorite piece of kit?
My computer and my phone. I rely on that to execute what I want to create.

9. Are you often asked to do more than direct? If so, what are you asked to do?
Sometimes during the offline editing session, agency are late sending artwork. So I design so I the artwork myself, and I enjoy this process. Beside that, I really enjoy doing VO guide for the offline. Because, I need to deliver the right feeling in the offline. When the agency and client see the edit, they will get the right pacing & feeling of what I’m trying to do in the work.

10. What are three pieces of technology you can’t live without?
Google slide, Photoshop and Premier.

11. This is a high-stress job. What do you do to de-stress from it all?
Just laugh at anything. Sounded pysco. I like to make everyone working with me in the set / editing suite happy when they’re doing their job.

12. How do you manage producers’ expectations with the reality of what can really be done?
Most of time, my producer will give me anything that I want. Thank you Pete, Pat, Teknam and Priya. But if I can’t get what I want, I will use all my resource’s and ask my producer to spend money on that.

13. How do you manage your time? Do you manage expectations or try everything they ask of you?
I don’t really have problem managing my time to deliver something. Usually when I receive the brief from the agency, my brain start’s to work because of I’m so excited, and I straight away writing my treatment.

14. When someone who is starting out asks what they should learn, what do you recommend?
Just try everything. Slowly you will found your own voice. Believe in yourself, and be honest when you do something.

15. How do you take criticism? Do you find yourself defensive or accepting of others’ ideas (good and bad)?
I think that depends on the context and who give’s this critic. Usually I will listen if the critics are making sense.

DIRECTOR’S PROFILE: Directors Think Tank Director Hyrul Anuar