Michael Graf, Writer/Director:
Named “Director of the Year” by Screen Magazine, Michael Graf is an Emmy® Award winning filmmaker and principal owner of Spot FilmWorks, Ltd. and has produced and directed hundreds of TV commercials for national and regional clients alike.
He’s directed work for a wide range of companies including AstraZeneca, The Miller Brewing Company, Jimmy Johns, Casey’s Pizza and Dow Agrosciences.
His award winning commercial work has been broadcast during the Super Bowl and been featured in Communication Arts and In Camera Magazines. Graf won Best of Show honors at the International Summit Creative Awards in Seattle, top broadcast honors at the NY Ace Awards, the CINE Golden Eagle, the Chicago Film Festival’s Hugo Award and a Silver WorldMedal at the New York Festivals for his directing.
He has won the American Advertising Federation’s Mosaic Award for Diversity for his commercial campaign for the International Peace Council and his work for Jimmy Johns was showcased on AdCritic.com’s Top 10 list of best commercials worldwide.
His recent screenplay, The Last Indian War, about the forced relocation of Native American children and the birth of modern football won the Culture & Heritage Award at the Fresh Voices Screenwriting Competition in Hollywood, was a semi-finalist for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Science’s prestigious Nicholl Fellowship for Screenwriters, was a second place winner at the LA All Sports Film Festival, was a semi-finalist at Circus Road Films Screenplay Contest and was a finalist at Sundance Film Festival’s screenwriting competition.
Graf is also co-author of the award-winning screenplay, Winter Of Frozen Dreams, which won top screenwriting honors at both the IFP Market in New York and at Worldfest Houston. The film stars Thora Birch and Keith Carradine.
Graf is a member of the Director’s Guild of America, is an adjunct professor at Marquette University and previously sat on the Board of Directors of IFP Chicago (the Independent Film Project) and SERVE Marketing. He is also a founding member and Board of Director of Film Wisconsin, a non-profit group serving Wisconsin’s filmmaking community.
He moved to the mid-west from Los Angeles where he previously worked at both Walt Disney Studios and The Post Group. He is a graduate of Syracuse University’s prestigious SI Newhouse School of Communications, owns a small farm in rural Wisconsin and raises horses with his wife, Linda, a renowned equestrian artist, and their little dog, a Jack Russell Terrier, named Willy.