In his native Denmark, director Daniel Kragh-Jacobsen hails from something of a filmic dynasty. He grew up watching his father create acclaimed documentary films, his mother run a theatre company and write screenplays, and his uncle, Søren Kragh-Jacobsen, enjoy international acclaim as a founding member of the influential Dogme95 movement.
Daniel began making short films at 17 while working his way up in casting and as a director’s assistant. His work often exhibits a feel for the complexities of youth — narratives that capture small human moments, but seem to arrive there without pretense or effort. His video for the Danish band When Saints Go Machine’s Parix, shot in one manic 24-hour stretch, depicts a young man on an all-night bender while his girlfriend undergoes a pregnancy ultrasound, their quiet dawn reunion suggesting a life change for them both. It won a 2012 UK Music Video Award for Best Rock/ Indie Video.
His short film The Song follows a 10-year-old cellist as he orchestrates the reconciliation of his estranged parents without their knowledge. Even more ambitious, Daniel’s 7-minute video for Washed Out’s All I Know uses the song’s ambient soundscape as the score for a dramatic piece about two young friends’ road trip to L.A. to find an ex-girlfriend, and the rich older suitor who spirited her away.
Daniel’s music video for the L.A. band Rhye’s The Fall won a 2013 Young Director Award for Best Music Video at the Cannes Lions, and four of his last five videos have been staff picks at Vimeo. His PSA Before It’s Too Late, an anti-teen suicide spot for the German nonprofit Friends for Life, earned him the 2012 First Prize European Test Commercial Young Director Award.
Daniel completed the AFI Conservatory program in Los Angeles and his graduation film, Turtle, is currently on the festival circuit. He recently returned to Copenhagen, where he directed the commercial Stay Curious for the Danish travel site Momondo. He is at work on his first feature film.