Saturday night in Cannes saw the final, hotly awaited, set of winners at this year’s Cannes Lions festival announced, with major wins for CAA/Nexus Productions, BETC Paris, R/GA, and Droga5, as well as Dan Wieden, who was awarded the Lion of St Mark trophy in celebration of his outstanding contribution to advertising…
The award ceremony also signalled the end of the week-long festival, which seemed a busier event than ever, as agencies, production companies, design studios and clients all hit the Croisette in search of inspiration and suntans.
In order to attract delegates out of the sunshine and into the Palais, the Cannes Lions organisers are inviting increasingly glamorous speakers to talk at the festival. This year was no exception, with Bill Clinton, Debbie Harry, Zaha Hadid and Alain de Botton all taking to the stage to offer their views (however tenuous) on the state of the advertising and design industries.
The big names may attract attention but the bread and butter of the festival for delegates remains the talks given by those who work in the industry, however. Of these, perhaps the hottest event was a talk given by two giants of the ad world, Dan Wieden and Sir John Hegarty, whose agencies were both formed 30 years ago, just days apart. A witty presentation, the duo lightly sparred about the differences in US and UK culture, as well as offering robust views on clients, research and the future of the industry.
But, despite all the meetings and parties that took place during the week, it is the awards themselves that remain the focus of the festival. And so to this year’s final winners.
First up, the Film Grand Prix. Despite the ongoing changes to the advertising industry, the film category remains the most entered of all the categories at Cannes Lions, and the most keenly watched. This year, there were several hot contenders: BBH London’s Three Little Pigs ad for the Guardian (shown here), BETC Paris’ The Bear for Canal+ (here), and Dads in Briefs by Del Campo Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi in Buenos Aires for BGH Air Conditioners (here) were much discussed as potential winners (and all received Golds), but in the end the Grand Prix went to Back To The Start by CAA and Nexus Productions for Chipotle, a film about sustainable farming that has been clearing up at award ceremonies worldwide. Watch it below:
CAA and Nexus Productions also picked up the Grand Prix in the inaugural Branded Content & Entertainment category.
BETC Paris had no need to be downcast however, as The Bear for Canal+ picked up the Grand Prix in the Film Craft Lions. Here’s the spot:
Also announced on Saturday were the winners of the Titanium and Integrated categories, which both honour groundbreaking work. This year, the Titanium Grand Prix went to R/GA for its Nike+ Fuelband, which had picked up the Cyber Grand Prix earlier in the week. The film below shows the project in more detail. This year, no Integrated Grand Prix was awarded.
The Titanium and Integrated juries also awarded the Cannes Lions Grand Prix For Good, which looked at a list of 53 contenders of charity and public services projects, before awarding Droga5 New York’s Help I Want To Save A Life project for Help Remedies the prize. The project sees simple-to-use bone marrow test kits enclosed with sets of plasters in the hope that more people will use them to join the bone marrow register in the US. The film below shows how the project developed:
A number of other awards were also presented, including the aforementioned Lion of St Mark trophy, awarded to Dan Wieden (below) in recognition of his “long and outstanding contribution to creativity in communications”. It was a happy night for Wieden in general, with W+K Portland picking up both the Advertising Agency of the Year gong, as well as the award for Independent Agency of the Year.
This year’s Palme D’or, for the most awarded production company, was presented to MJZ USA. The Network of the Year award was presented to Ogilvy & Mather. The Advertiser of the Year went to Mars Incorporated.
And so Cannes Lions is over for another year…. Awards were won, meetings were had, rosé was drunk (and drunk, and drunk), suntans were acheived, and some people even met Jon Hamm (aka Mad Men’s Don Draper). Who could ask for anything more?
To see the full lists of winners, and other general info on the festival, visit canneslions.com. And please feel free to post your own reflections on the festival, and the award winners, in the comments below. Did this year live up to your expectations? Did the awards miss anything out? Let us know your thoughts.