Michael David Thomson

Executive Creative Director / Founder at Fire Wihtout Smoke

London, United Kingdom
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Projects credited in

About me

I started out by studying Artificial Intelligence at Edinburgh University. I built robots, investigated human-computer interaction and played with genetic algorithms. It was great -- but my love of movies ultimately beat my love of tech. So post-graduation, I headed to film school, confident in the knowledge that the singularity may put all the computer scientists out of work, but the super intelligence will probably not make that many movies. However, the mix of visual storytelling and tech has kept drawing me back to video games. We founded the creative agency Fire Without Smoke (www.firewithoutsmoke.com) to have fun crafting great work for entertaining products. We provide a wide range of services: from key art, websites and films to virtual reality experiences. In addition to marketing, we also provide creative consulting for game development.

Locked Pro Plan feature


  • Film Production
  • Film Post-production
  • Creative Direction
  • Direction
  • Editing Avid
  • Editing Film
  • Brand Direction
  • Campaign Advertising
  • CGI

People I’ve worked with

Companies I’ve worked with

  • The Division

    The Division

    • Design
  • Fire Without Smoke

    Fire Without Smoke

    • Advertising
  • Rockstar Games

    Rockstar Games

    • Gaming
  • U


    Work history


    Executive Creative Director / Founder

    Fire Without Smoke

    Jan 2013
    • London, United Kingdom
    • Full Time
    • I founded Fire Without Smoke with two friends from the ad world in 2013 to have fun making great ads for video games. Skip a few years and we've been lucky enough to have done exactly that, now with a larger team across three offices on two continents. Day to day, I work with clients; manage creative and production teams; and oversee the creative work we put out.


    Producer / Director / Editor


    Aug 2008 - Jun 2015
    • London, United Kingdom
    • Full Time
    • Directed and edited ads for TV, cinema and online. Wrote and produced promos and other short form content. Clients included: AMV BBDO, BBC Worldwide, Capcom, Endemol, Estée Lauder, Proctor and Gamble, Saatchi & Saatchi, Sega, Sony Computer Entertainment, Ubisoft, UEFA.


    Director / Editor

    Offhollywood Studios

    Jul 2005 - Jul 2008
    • New York, United States
    • Full Time
    • Directed promos. Edited features, TV shows and ads. Clients included: IFC Films, Merchant-Ivory Productions, Michael Mailer Films, OffHollywood Studios, Atari, The CW, DishNetwork, EuroRSCG, Grey, JWT, Proctor and Gamble, Rainbow Media, Saatchi and Saatchi, SpikeTV, Wolf/Doyle. Feature film projects included: Destricted (with Marina Abramovic, Matthew Barney, Gaspar Noe), How To Seduce Difficult Women (with Louis-Do de Lencquesaing, Stephanie Szostak, Rachel Roberts), Rockaway (with Nicholas Gonzalez, Mario Cimarro), Kettle of Fish (with Matthew Modine, Gina Gershon).


    Director (Trailers and Ads)

    Rockstar Games

    Apr 2003 - May 2005
    • New York, United States
    • Full Time
    • Produced and directed video ad campaigns, assisted on cut scene camera work and editing, created other in-game video assets. Worked on GTA franchise, Red Dead franchise, Max Payne franchise, Midnight Club franchise. Also performed similar duties for Take 2 Interactive's game series such as Mafia, Serious Sam, Hidden and Dangerous and the 2K sub-brand.



    BSc(Hons) Artificial Intelligence and Psychology

    Edinburgh University

    Oct 1997
    • Edinburgh, United Kingdom
    • Joint degree in Artificial Intelligence and Psychology, graduated with Honors. Topics included: machine learning, machine vision, natural language processing, neural networks, genetic algorithms, robotics, cognitive modelling and philosophy of mind. Focus on human interaction with AI agents in education and learning situations.


    MA Television, Radio and Film

    Syracuse University

    Dec 2000 - Dec 2003
    • Syracuse, United States
    • Focus on advertising and screenwriting.