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Who is Joseph Kahn The Film and Music Video Director?

Joseph Kahn, formally known as Ahn Juhn-Hee is a Korean-born American, Grammy Award winning movie and music video director. He has worked with many artists including Snoop Dogg, Mariah Carey, Eminem, Imagine Dragons and more recently, Taylor Swift. He has also directed and edited many blockbusters including Detention and Torque that starred Ice Cube.

Kahn was born on October 12th, 1982 in South Korea’s second most populated city, Busan. In 1975, Kahn’s family relocated to a Houston suburb called Jersey Village in Texas. Kahn was only three years old. He went to high school at Jersey Village High School and graduated in 1990. Kahn later applied and got accepted to New York University’s Tisch School of Arts. He later dropped out after only one year on campus to pursue a career directing music videos.

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Kahn’s career as a music director began in 1990 with the role of music video director in Pain Teens’ ‘The Basement’ video. From then hence, he has worked with several artists as an independent including DMG, Ice Cube, Geto Boyz and Usher.

In 1999, Kahn teamed up with fellow producer and former head of Columbia/Tristar Pictures, Chris Lee, to form their own production company dubbed SuperMega Media. The company was under HSI Productions, a film production company based in Sydney, Los Angeles and New York. His first work at SuperMega Media was with Mob Deep in his music video of the first version of ‘Quiet Storm’. Kahn has seen great success ever since and has worked with many famous artists to produce award winning videos. Some of his notable projects are Britney Spears’ ‘Toxic’ and Eminem and Rihanna’s ‘Love the Way You Lie’.

Kahn strives to incorporate aspects of Japanese pop culture into his music videos. This is seen in Janet Jackson’s “Doesn’t Really Matter”. The video, with its colourful and funky vibe, was also the most
expensive he had ever done, costing a staggering 2.5 million dollars.

Music Video Awards

Kahn has received numerous awards for his contribution in various music videos. His first accolades include several MTV music awards that he has scooped over the years, for Best Video Awards. He won these awards for his role as director in Brandy and Monica’s ‘The Boy is Mine’ Chris Brown’s ‘Forever, Eminem’s ‘Love The Way You Lie’. In 2002, Kahn saw his music video for Eminem’s ‘Without Me’ music video win his first Grammy. The video also won Best Video of the Year and Best Direction in MTV’s VMA in the same year. He also won a MVPA for Katy Perry’s ‘Waking Up in Vegas’

In 2014, Kahn received The Icon Award in the UK Music Video Awards and later in 2015, won his second Grammy for Katy Perry featuring Kendrick Lamar’s ‘Bad Blood’, an action packed music video that stunned fans worldwide. He recently won the Video of the Year award for ‘Forever Country’ the American Country Music Awards, 2017.

Joseph Kahn’s Contribution to Film

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In 2004, Kahn directed the film ‘Torque’. This was followed by an adaptation of William Gibson’s ‘Necromancer’ in 2007 for film producer Peter Hoffman. He played a double role of screen writer and director in the self-financed movie ‘Detention’ in 2011. So great was the reception from viewers that it amassed many film festival awards as an audience favourite. SONY later picked up the film for distribution in 2012.

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