By Eleftheria Parpis
CANNES, FRANCE — The marketing campaign that took Barack Obama, a little-known African American senator with only two years of experience in Washington, to the U.S. presidency was honored with the two top prizes—the Titanium Grand Prix and the Integrated Grand Prix—at the International Advertising Festival in Cannes on Saturday. The effort was created by a multi-agency team, including AKPD and GMMB.
In the Film competition, a digital agency, Tribal DDB in Amsterdam, won the Grand Prix for its epic "Carousel" spot for Philips (below). The ad, directed by Adam Berg of Stink Digital and promoting the Philips Cinema 21:9 LCD TV, depicts an elaborate robbery gone wrong, frozen in time throughout one continuous tracking shot, and includes interactive touch points where viewers can access additional content.
Film jury president David Lubars, chairman and chief creative officer of BBDO North America, said the Philips spot is not only a "brilliant piece of content" but also "shows the way forward" as a film that works across multiple screens and offers interactive elements with additional content.
The Titanium and Integrated jury came to a unanimous decision that the Obama campaign deserved the top honors in both contests, said jury president David Droga, creative chairman of Droga5, because it was a ground-breaking political campaign that engaged the public and featured an idea that was "made better" with its use of different media. "It created a movement that was more than advertising," said Droga. "From the strategy to how they used different media, it was a very compelling moment in marketing."
The campaign, Droga added, broke the mold of political advertising, embraced technology and created a template that was up to the public to fill in. "It felt like it was created by the people," he said. "The general public got consumed by it and added a different element to it. Incredibly inspired grassroots movement."
AFTER THE JUMP: Other winners in the categories.
The Titanium and Integrated jury awarded 15 Lions in addition to the Grand Prix prizes. The U.S. did particularly well, with all three Titanium Lions awarded to U.S. agencies. Crispin Porter + Bogusky won for Burger King's "Whopper Sacrifice"; Droga5 for "The Great Schlep" for the Jewish Council for Education and Research; and BBH for "Oasis Dig Out Your Soul" for NYC & Company and Warner Brothers.
In Integrated, two gold, four silver, and five bronze Lions were awarded. The golds went to TBWA\Hunt\Lascaris in South Africa for The Zimbabwean "Trillion Dollar Campaign" (which won a Grand Prix earlier in the week in Outdoor); and to Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco for its Sprint "Now Network" campaign.
Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore., won a silver Integrated Lion for its campaign for the Laika movie Coraline. Goodby won a silver for Häagen-Dazs "HD Loves HB" and a bronze for Hyundai "Assurance." Crispin won a bronze for Domino's "You Got 30 Minutes."
The Film jury awarded 88 Lions in addition to the Grand Prix—16 golds, 36 silvers and 36 bronzes. Lubars said all the gold winners are "brilliant," including the James Boag's Draught "Pure Waters" spot from Publicis Mojo in Sydney; the Sagami condoms "Love Distance" commercial from GT Tokyo; and the Stella Artois Web series from Mother in London that included "8 Kilometre," "Vingt-quatre" and "Dial Hard." But the Philips spot represents the future of film advertising, he said.
"You can watch it as a straight film, but you can also drag your cursor over it and another film reveals itself, so there are films inside of films," Lubars said. "When you when you watch it on TV, it demonstrates how you can use the features of the TV, but you can also watch it as a great piece of brilliant content without any of that other stuff and say, wow, that was great. This year, the best piece of creative and the way forward were contained in that piece." See the making-of video here:
Two U.S. agencies won gold Lions in Film: JWT in New York for an MTV "Choose or Lose" voting awareness campaign; and Barrie D'Rozario Murphy, Minneapolis, for a Chambers Hotel video piece.
A special jury prize was also awarded to Charles Stone's "Whassup '08: True Vote" pro-Obama spot.
The Agency of the Year honor went to DDB Brazil in São Paulo, with Almap BBDO in São Paulo and DDB & Co. in Istanbul coming in second and third place.
BBDO Worldwide was named Network of the Year. DDB and Leo Burnett came in second and third.
The Palme D'Or went to Phenomena in Thailand.
For a complete list of winners go to CannesLions.com.