After four years working for the BBC and ITV as a graphic designer, Mark joined the advertising industry in 1978 as a television producer. FM&M had no television department. Mark rapidly established one. As well as commercials, he produced many music-promos for the agency client, WEA Records for acts such as C’Est Chic, Sister Sledge and Rod Stewart. This was then a nascent business, allowing much scope for creative experimentation, resulting in his winning an industry ‘Gold Disc’ for million-album seller Rose Royce in 1979.
In 1980 Mark joined CDP – the UK’s leading creative advertising agency – as a television producer. Over the next ten years, he worked on some of the most famous and award-winning television commercials ever made, including Hamlet Cigars, Hovis and Cinzano, collecting many Cannes and BTA Gold and Silver ‘Lions’ in the process as well as numerous other accolades.
In 1986, he was promoted to Head of Television, the youngest in London. He joined the agency board in 1986 and the group board in 1987. Whilst continuing to direct the activities of the television department, Mark launched international production services company Production Network a decade ahead of its time.
He was invited to join the board of production company Playback (Talkback Productions & CDP) and then co-founded Independent Image, which became one of the industry’s leading television programme suppliers, specializing in drama, news, current affairs and tele-drama.
In 1991, Mark was appointed managing director of Propaganda Films’ European operation. Los Angeles-based Propaganda, a PolyGram company, was the largest, most influential commercials and music-video production company in the world at that time. It represented over 40 directors, including many famous names such as David Lynch, David Fincher and Michael Bay.
Propaganda produced hundreds of commercials for leading brands such as Nike, Adidas, General Motors and Stella Artois and music-videos featuring superstars such as Madonna and Michael Jackson. Propaganda won the Palme D’Or at Cannes for four years in the 1990’s.
In 1994, Mark Andrews was asked to chair the Pliatsky Committee. This was the joint industry initiative of the IPA, ISBA and the AFVPA, which established current working practices for the UK commercials industry.
In 1996, Mark left to establish his own production company, Tsunami Films. Tsunami quickly won a reputation for discovering and developing new directing talent from very diverse backgrounds. It also made an immediate impact in the worlds of commercials, fashion and music by winning the Brit Award for best music video of 1998 for the All Saints launch hit ‘Never Ever’. Tsunami produced commercials for clients as diverse as Airbus, Fox TV, Sony Playstation and BT as well as music-videos for Blur, Moloko, Garbage and many others.
Mark is currently involved in developing a number of new projects to service the film, television, advertising and music industries. Mark’s current initiative is M-A-D-E (Mark Andrews Digital Emporium), a creative image producer and talent agency. M-A-D-E has developed a new and unique ‘open-architecture’ business model based on its ability to act as an agent, production company, executive producer or consultant as required. Its focus is the provision and management of creative talent and the development, production and delivery of creative solutions for clients in all media: cinema, television, computer-screen, mobile phone and print. Recent clients include19Management, Universal Records, Mercedes USA, The Really Useful Picture Company and advertising agencies worldwide.
See also: Debrett’s ‘People of Today’.