A Coast director's shot at Super Bowl glory did not win him the ultimate prize but he has scored plenty of touchdowns since receiving global exposure.

Tom Noakes grew up on the Sunshine Coast, worked at Chancellor Park Woolworths as a teenager and shot videos of his mates at Alexandra Headland Skate Park.

He told them he was going to be a director.

His mother Jacqueline McConnell helped him buy his first camera and ferried him down to Brisbane when he started film school.

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He made his first commercial at 22 and said he was going well.

That progress hit top gear in 2014 with a crass but extremely popular entry in the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl competition.

His entry was one of five short-listed commercials that were in the running to win him $1 million and a job on Marvel's The Avengers: Age of Ultron sequel.

"I didn't win the million, obviously," Mr Noakes, now 34, said this week.

"I never expected to.

"The fact we even got into the finalists surprised me."

But the exposure from the competition was very helpful.

"That was a marked level up in terms of representation and opportunities after that," he said.

He has worked in Australia, New Zealand, mainland Europe, the US and UK since then directing ads for clients including Reebok, Nike and Coca-Cola as well as music clips for bands including Flight Facilities.

Director Tom Noakes has worked around the world since growing up on the Sunshine Coast.
Director Tom Noakes has worked around the world since growing up on the Sunshine Coast.

His most recent international job was shooting an advertisement for The Glenlivet whisky in Slovenia.

He is currently in Sydney having worked on advertisements for Carsales.com.

"It (my work) has just kind of been one after the other and worked out in my favour," Mr Noakes said.

Despite the helping hand it provided, he said the Doritos advertisement was not representative or reflective of his kind of work.

"I want to do stuff that is more sophisticated in its language," he said.

He said finding a balance between doing the jobs that represented his artistic vision and ensuring he had steady work was a delicate task.

"I say no to 99 per cent of scripts out there," he said.

"There is a point where if you say no too much you risk losing relevancy."

Director Tom Noakes speaks with crew members during a shoot at Gordon Dam in Tasmania.
Director Tom Noakes speaks with crew members during a shoot at Gordon Dam in Tasmania.

He said his job selection always came down to the quality of the script at hand.

"I have to have a take on something or a vision on it to engage with it," he said.

Mr Noakes said he was proud to have grown up on the Sunshine Coast and wanted to keep working in Australia.

He said his mum's support was a big factor in why he was still doing what he was doing.

"I have had plenty of opportunities to live overseas and I didn't want to do it," he said.

"I want to do stuff here before I do stuff overseas."

His goals include bringing to fruition a feature-length film with some other filmmakers who have been in a small production company with him for more than a decade.

That goal requires funding and a project that justifies the extreme effort to bring it to life.

But without giving too much away, Mr Noakes said it was shaping as a reality.

"We're close, we're really close."

For more on his work click here.

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