The story. It’s what grabs our attention, throws its arms around us, and takes us on a journey. It is at the core of every project we embark on and there is no piece of communication that is complete without it. Stories move us, entertain us, inform us, and educate us. But even more importantly, stories enable us to foster and build the brands we work on.
We are a creative collective and full-service, production company comprised of directors, designers, producers, writers, thinkers, photographers, editors, and believers in every product, service, or organization we choose to work with and every story we decide to tell. Whether that takes the form of a television commercial, a viral web film, a music video, a brand
Rick Knief is the founding partner and executive producer of Table of Content.
Rick began his career as an art director, working at advertising agencies in both New York and Boston. But it was while working as a creative director at Ogilvy & Mather, New York, where he was able to translate his passion for art direction, photography, and story-telling into the art of directing when he was given the opportunity to direct his first commercial for American Express.
From that moment on there was no turning back and Rick went on to win the top honor of “Best Creative Director” at the Forbes American Business Awards for the success of his work on the British Virgin Islands tourism campaign, which he both directed and art directed. That same year, his 9/11 documentary, “Looking for My Brother,” premiered at the Boston Film Festival and earned praise from both the Boston Globe and the Boston Herald.
While some of Rick’s work as creative director can be seen in the archives of the One Show, Communication Arts, and D&AD, it is his work as a director where he really shines. Using his unique, collaborative style he is able to take advantage of his marketing and people skills and elicit smart, genuine and human performances from his talent, capture their emotions, and connect them to the brands he works on in a clean, graphic, and cinematic style.
A true lover of creative collaboration, Rick founded Table of Content as a creative collective, where like-minded creative professionals can work alongside one another, develop, and create stories that entertain and engage the audience.
Raised by wolves (also known as hippies) in Berkeley California, Tom grew up surrounded by an eclectic bunch of artists and freaks, and began his own illustrious career at fifteen shooting remakes of the action film The Road Warrior over and over and over again. At nineteen he got his first break working for producer Lowell Bergman as a camera assistant and associate producer on CBS’s 60 Minutes, and by 20 he had joined the International Cinematographers Guild and moved to New York City (replacing the hippies with actual wolves).
Tom soon climbed the ranks of the camera department, and by 25 was working full-time as a Director of Photography, shooting everything from music videos (Bowie, Dylan, Stevie Wonder, Public Enemy, Cypress Hill, etc) to commercials and documentaries. In the following few years he shot the TV series, “The United States of Poetry”, directed by Mark Pellington, his first feature, “Manny and Lo”, starring Scarlett Johansson, directed by his sister, Lisa Krueger, and directed his own short film, “Fuzzy Logic”, which screened at the Cannes and Sundance Film Festivals and won several awards including Best Short at the New York Gen Art Festival.
Since then Tom has shot and directed countless projects, wrote and directed the feature, “You’re In Charge”, along with U2’s, “360 -Live at the Rose Bowl”, and most recently shot the Jim Jarmusch film, “Gimme Danger”, among other things.
“I feel lucky to have a solid grasp of photography, the camera, the lighting and movement, which has served me well thus far. Today what interests me most, along with these stylistic choices, are the characters. Why do people do the things they do, wear what they wear, or say what they say? It absolutely fascinates me. Placing unique characters in interesting situations is what it’s all about, and capturing that in a provocative, dynamic way is the challenge, it’s what sets directors apart from one another. I look at it as one-giant-collaboration, and my job as director is to get the most out of everyone involved, from the actors and crew, to the writers and creative directors. All of us checking our egos at the door.”
Since his first spot of his career launched at the Cannes Young Director Showcase, Aaron’s vision has drawn wide acclaim. His visual style, with strong European and American influences, has inspired strong emotions and brought audiences into new worlds alongside performances that feel profoundly real.
The streets of New York are Aaron’s source of inspiration. Each neighborhood can feel like a different world, and to explore New York is to embrace this immersive mentality. One of his favorite things about the city is meeting people from other cultures, and learning how to say hello in their native tongues. For him, it’s all about bringing people together.
You can see this intimacy and immersion in his work. His first spot, a PSA for the Van Cliburn Foundation, was praised for the tender performances and striking cinematography. Immediately his name was known across the world as one of the fastest rising talents, racking up recognition at the Cannes Lions Festival, the Ciclope Festival, and in his home of New York where he was featured as one of SHOOT Online’s hottest new directors and asked to speak at their annual event.
Since then, Mountain Dew challenged Aaron to dive into a world of non-conformity, and he has created content for brands such as Acadia National Park, Montblanc, and Castrol. Aaron continues to hone his unique aesthetic, always challenging himself to push new concepts while still remaining grounded in the essence of his work – the story and the characters.
Among his major inspirations are the hyperrealism of Paul Greengrass, the beautifully dark work of David Fincher, and the tender portraits of Krzysztof Kieslowski.
Aaron is always looking for new cultures to explore, new people to meet, and new stories to tell. Each opportunity to step behind the camera is another adventure, and he is eager to share them with audiences around the world.
Born Laurence Rhoderic Blackhurst IV, Rod was predisposed to a life of adventure and storytelling. Named after his Grandfather, who sailed around the world three times, hung out in Batista Era Cuba, flew bombing missions in World War II, hunted big game in Africa, shot trick contests for Remington Arms, blacksmithed, competed as a bodybuilder, and is widely known as the unofficial inspiration for the Most Interesting Man in the World….you’ll understand why Rod has spent his thirty five years on earth thus far directing films, documentaries, commercials, and music videos while assembling his own collection of unusual adventure stories.
Raised without access to a television, the first time he viewed both RoboCop and Full Metal Jacket, Rod spent many sleepless nights in the woods of the Adirondacks thinking he had just witnessed the strangest documentaries of all time. After graduating with a degree in French Literature (no joke) from Colgate University, he realized the real world didn’t care so much about GPAs so he loaded up his station wagon and made like Lewis and Clark for the Pacific.
Get Rod in a karaoke bar and in between performances of Blackstreet’s ‘No Diggity’ and any Backstreet Boys song (again, no joke) he’ll probably tell you some stories about touring for a four years with a rock band around North America and Europe, hanging out at Willie Nelson’s house in Maui, flying airplanes with Kenny G, or that time he convinced some of the Super Troopers actors to go make a weird film in the desert. He’ll also probably tell you about his love of John Steinbeck, Paul Auster, Wim Wenders, Roger Deakins, backroads, diner breakfast, why atmosphere and setting are crucial to narrative filmmaking, and why cheese makes everything delicious.
Rod’s feature debut, “Here Alone”, a post-apocalyptic thriller that he both directed and co-produced, won the Best Narrative Audience Award at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival. His feature-length documentary, “Amanda Knox”, about the eight-yearlong international murder trial of Amanda Knox was released worldwide by Netflix to stellar reviews by the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, among countless others.
Rod is currently developing co-writing the dramatic feature, “North”, based on the short story by Matthew Wade Jordan. “North” was a 2013 finalist for a San Francisco Film Society/KRF Grant.
Rod’s short films have debuted at dozens of festivals to numerous accolades and even earned him the coveted, Vimeo Staff Pick honor three times. Including one for his short film, “Alone Time”, which was not only included in the best of Vimeo for 2013, it was one of the most viewed narrative shorts that year on vimeo.com. (And in Russia, for some reason.)
Rod has been able to translate his love of film, relentless work ethic, gift of story-telling, and beautiful aesthetic into his commercial work as well. This is evident in his work for the launching and visual rebranding of Airbnb, among other clients that have had the pleasure to work with him.
DIRECTOR / PHOTOGRAPHER
HEAD OF PRODUCTION