1/ Misha Manson-Smith is a Rogue, obviously – and he’s also a BAFTA, Emmy and British Comedy Award-winning director and writer.
2/ With "Online Checkout In Real Life", Google wanted to show off their Google Analytics software, which analyses web traffic in ways far too clever for us to go into here (ie we don’t understand how it works – but it is very impressive). Key to this would be creating inherently funny situations that speak to people's real experiences of using badly designed websites. To fit with Google's own very particular sensibility, the spots had to be cast and directed with wit, charm and an understated naturalism. As longtime fans of his TV work, particularly in comedy, Misha was the perfect fit and he came on board to both write and direct.
3/ He’s prepping a comedy feature: Sex Education. The script was voted no.1 on the 2010 Brit List (the UK version of the Black List - the annual list of Hollywood's most liked, unproduced screenplays).
4/ He’s been busy. His TV work includes La La Land, the Showtime comedy series he directed and executive produced in 2009/10. It stars comedian Marc Wootton as three hapless wannabes seeking fame and fortune in LA. In 2010 he directed BBC comedy-drama pilot Stanley Park and one-off BBC2 event drama Excluded. Stanley Park, starred Holliday Grainger and Sharon Horgan and although it isn’t going anywhere here, Fox is now remaking it in the US. Excluded, starring Brian Dick, Craig Parkinson and a lot of real kids acting for the first time, was very different - a hyper-naturalistic drama about the relationship between a newly qualified teacher and a hell-raising pupil. It got some pretty impassioned reviews. If we’d ever been offered a job as a teacher, one look at this would have us either forging a sick note or smuggling a bazooka into the classroom in a satchel.
5/ Without wanting to make him out like an overachieving swot, his work has won four Emmys, a BAFTA and a British Comedy Award, and he’s been nominated for three BAFTA’s, including the ‘Breakthrough Talent’ Award. More impressively, he can eat a whole packet of Ryvita Multi-Seed Thins without water - even if he’s still got half of them in each cheek as the pre-production meeting starts. That’s real talent for you.