SA CANNES PREDICTIONS BY JASON XENOPOLOUS, CEO NATIVE VML
As a country, South Africa has a proven track record at Cannes Lions. Unfortunately, our work tends to win in single and mostly traditional categories. Apart from Ogilvy Cape Town’s recent successes in categories like Branded Content and Mobile, most of our awards are still won in radio, print, outdoor, and occasionally film. Looking through this year’s entries, I am impressed by the work but I still don’t see many contenders for the bigger awards (Integrated and Titanium) or the more digital categories such as Cyber, Mobile, and Branded Content. That said, there are a number of pieces that really stand out:
ONE SCHOOL AT A TIME ‘PROJECT ENGLISH‘
(Joe Public) Cannes juries love purpose-driven work. They also respond well to media innovation. This campaign uses radio in a fresh new way – one that not only communicates a message, but actually demonstrates it. I am betting big on this one.
PUNK CORPORATE IDENTITY ‘I AM PUNK‘
(King James/PUNK) Punk’s innovative software-driven corporate identity takes the idea of a “dynamic” Corporate Identity to a whole new level. This CI reflects the agency’s ethos and it does so in a unique and memorable way.
BELL’S ‘THE READER‘
(King James) I have to be honest that this is not my favorite film. I find the syrupy-sweet sentimentalism disturbing… but I am clearly in the minority. People love this ad and no one can fail to be impressed by director Greg Gray’s impeccable execution. If Cannes juries respond the way local audiences have, then this will bring home some metal.
JOHANNESBURG ZOO ‘WORLD’S FIRST LIVE TWEETING HONEY BADGER‘
(FCB JHB) I spoke to the guys at HelloComputer and suggested that they use a beaver instead of a badger… but despite having ignored my excellent suggestion, they managed to produce an amazingly successful campaign. If the international exposure that this campaign has garnered is anything to go by, it will resonate with the Cannes jury. Now all they need to do is add a tweeting beaver.
GUN FREE SOUTH AFRICA ‘CAR-JACKING / INTRUDER / ROBBERY‘
(Y&R South Africa) This campaign is based on a really powerful insight. I have no doubt that any gun owner who sees it will be moved to take better care of their weapon – which could literally save lives in our gun-ridden country.
OUDE MEESTER BRANDY ‘MASTERY IN THE MAKING‘
(140BBDO) I’m not sure there is enough of an idea in this TV commercial for it to win a Film Lion, but Kim Geldenhuys’s masterful direction makes it a worthy Craft contender. Cinematographer Paul Gilpen, who also shot “The Reader”, deserves a lifetime achievement award… and with Idris Elba in the leading role, this film certainly won’t go unnoticed.
COCA-COLA ‘A RAINBOW FOR THE RAINBOW NATION‘
(FCB JHB) I am betting on this one because… well, because creating a real rainbow is a pretty awesome thing to do!
THE WAR MUSEUM ‘THE OTHER SIDE OF WAR‘
(IrelandDavenport) This is a powerful idea. I struggled a bit with the strategy, which came across as a little convoluted in the case video, but I am hoping that the idea will win through.
(Joe Public) I want one! Isn’t that the real test of good brand collateral? Great insight, excellently executed. Let’s light one of these at the Cannes Lions closing Gala. Carlton Beach here we come!
I haven’t listed any of our own entries… but I think it goes without saying that if we didn’t think our work was going to win, we wouldn’t have entered it. If you want to win a Lion, you have to believe that you’ll win a Lion. Haven’t you read The Secret? That said, listing any of the individual pieces here would just seem too much like self-adulation… so I have refrained from commenting on any of our own work. Suffice to say I am holding thumbs!