Alek Keshishian is an award-winning film and commercial director, writer, producer, and photographer. His professional journey began immediately out of college when he arrived in Los Angeles. He began his career as a music video director, which led to him being chosen, at age 24, by Madonna to direct her groundbreaking documentary TRUTH OR DARE, which became the highest grossing documentary of its time. TRUTH OR DARE first displayed Keshishian’s fascination playing with “image” and “reality,” which continued to inform his work throughout his career.
Following TRUTH OR DARE, Keshishian directed Warner Bros.’ WITH HONORS, starring a talented cast comprised of Joe Pesci, Brendan Fraser, and Patrick Dempsey. The film was number one at the box office in the US for the first two weeks of its release, cementing Keshishian’s status as a filmmaker.
At age 29, feeling burnt out and unsure of what might be next, Keshishian went to London for a two-week vacation and ended up staying for ten years. Keshishian focused on creating a new life for himself in Europe, concentrating on photography and commercials. During his time in London, he directed and conceived award-winning work for clients, including Coca Cola, Peugeot, Volkswagen, Brut by Faberge, Aprilia, Bailey’s, and Max Factor.
In 2007, Keshishian returned to the US after writing, directing, and producing the indie comedy LOVE AND OTHER DISASTERS, starring the late Brittany Murphy, Matthew Rhys, and Catherine Tate. The film had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival and its London premiere as the gala screening for the BFI 22nd London Gay and Lesbian Film Festival.
While back in the U.S., Keshishian focused on his writing, penning scripts for Paramount, Universal, and Warner Bros. During this time, he collaborated with several filmmakers, including David Fincher, and agreed to co-write Madonna’s first feature, W.E.. Keshishian continued to direct several commercials and special projects, including Jennifer Aniston’s two Smartwater viral campaigns and shorts that featured Chelsea Handler alongside Sandra Bullock and Conan O’Brian.
Keshishian’s commercial work and special projects displayed his special talent at portraying celebrities in novel and surprising ways. Madonna, Gwyneth Paltrow, Natalie Portman, Orlando Bloom, Jennifer Aniston, Darryl Hannah, Jean Reno, Heather Graham, Chelsea Handler, Sandra Bullock, and Conan O’Brian are just some of the celebrities that have willingly embraced his creative spirit over the years.
In the fall of 2015, Selena Gomez approached Keshishian to direct her video for “Hands to Myself.” The video was shot over 3 days in November and in typical Keshishian fashion, showcased a reinvention of Selena.
In 2016, Gomez asked Keshishian to film her Revival Tour. Keshishian hesitated as he had been offered countless music documentaries following the success of TRUTH OR DARE but had refused them all. However, he was captivated by Selena’s vulnerability and authenticity and agreed to film a one-week test run if Gomez would give him total access. After the week, Keshishian and Gomez mutually agreed the timing wasn’t right, and Keshishian halted filming. In 2019, Gomez asked Keshishian to film her trip to Kenya, which was being documented for charity. Keshishian accepted and, with Gomez’s permission, filmed a few days prior to their departure to Kenya. Those initial days of filming blossomed into a multi-year labor of love — a documentary that would follow Gomez on her road to recovery and renewal after a time of darkness in 2018. Keshishian’s second documentary: SELENA GOMEZ: MY MIND & ME, was released by Apple TV+ on November 4.
Keshishian lives between New York and Los Angeles. He is represented in all areas by Aleen Keshishian and Zack Morgenroth of Lighthouse Management & Media.