Jeff Zwart

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Jeffrey "Jeff" R. Zwart (born 24 May 1955) is an American commercial film director, racer, photographer, cameraman and author for Porsche, BMW, Cadillac, General Motors, Hyundai, Ford and more.

Jeff Zwart in 2011.

Life and career[edit]

Zwart was born in Long Beach, California, and learned to drive in his father’s 1964 Porsche 901, chassis number 35.[1] Growing up next door to his childhood friend and future automotive designer, Freeman Thomas, the two shared a lifelong obsession with automobiles and Porsches in particular.[2] In high school, Zwart worked as a veterinary assistant in order to save enough money to eventually purchase a yellow Porsche 914/6. In 1997 he ran that same 914/6 in the 10,000 mile, 25 day, Panama to Alaska Rally winning second place overall.[citation needed] In 1979, after graduating from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, he began work as a still photographer shooting Road & Track Magazine covers, calendars, and article photos.[citation needed]

In 1989, following an American Photography Magazine cover story on Zwart’s automotive photography work, he was given the opportunity to direct television commercials. He joined Jon Kamen and Frank Scherma to form His commercial client list includes; Porsche, Cadillac, BMW, Ford, PlayStation, Firestone Tire and Rubber Company and Forza Motorsport 5/ Xbox.[3]

Zwart is known[by whom?] for his camera philosophy of “full immersion” perspective, an expertise consulted by “Rush” director Ron Howard.[citation needed] He has shot in over 30 countries throughout his career working on a range of international advertising campaigns and TV series work.[citation needed] On September 20, 2013, working with San Francisco-based advertising agency twofifteenmccan, Zwart revealed the world’s fastest Zoetrope in the form of a two-minute film entitled “Forza/Filmspeed.”

Zwart has published three books in collaboration with David Bull Publishing and is a monthly contributor to the Porsche Club of America’sPanorama” magazine.[4]

Racing career[edit]

Zwart started road racing Formula Fords during the mid-1980s on the West Coast of the United States which led to an interest in rallying. In 1989 and 1990 he drove a Mazda in the US Pro Rally Championship, eventually winning the Open Class National Championship. Zwart also competed in the New Zealand round of the World Rally Championship driving a Mitsubishi EVO in 1993.[citation needed]

Zwart is noted for his wins at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado.[5] In 1994, he entered the event with a Porsche and won the Open Class Championship. This success led to a number of programs; driving 10 different Porsches resulting in 8 different class championships over a period of 14 years, including his 2015 win in the Time Attack Class.[6] In 2011, he competed in what was essentially a production street car, a Porsche 997 GT2 RS.[7] The accomplishment of driving the Porsche from Southern California to the famous hill climb in Colorado and successfully racing at Pikes Peak was highlighted in the short film “Porsche, the Road to Pikes Peak,” directed by Will Roegge.[8]


  • Porsche 917x17: The Cars and Drivers in Studio, ISBN 978-1-935007-04-3, Hardcover with slipcase, 13"x11", 264 pages, Published in 2009
  • Three Points of Contact, ISBN 978-1-893618-99-2, Hardcover with slipcase, 13"x11", 152 pages, Published in 2008
  • Porsche Rennsport, 1-893618-69-2, Hardcover with slipcase, 15"x10", 192 pages, published 2006

External links[edit]