Awards show proves all the world's an ad stage
The New York Festivals' 1999 International Television & Cinema Advertising Awards, dominated by humorous ads and public-service announcements, honored the sarcastic and the sincere. Judges from Hong Kong to Birmingham, Ala., sitting on 16 panels, culled the winners from more than 12,000 entries representing 64 countries.
The global aesthetic made the Jan. 28 awards "feel like a real international gathering," says John Nieman, worldwide CCO at D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles, New York, and the festivals' global chairman. More than 800 awards were handed out, including five Best of Show Grand Awards and 162 craft and technique prizes.
Grand winners included a much-lauded effort, Cliff Freeman and Partners' spots for FoxSports.com. The irreverent ads took Best Campaign.
A spot for France Telecom, created by CLM/BBDO in Issy Les Moulineaux, France, garnered the Best Commercial Grand Award. In it, a South American border guard and his pretty accomplice sneak a soccer ball through customs. The tagline: "Football gets people talking."
The Best Creative/Production Achievement award went to Shalmor Avnon Amichay/Young & Rubicam in Tel Aviv, Israel. Tagged "Radio advertising works," the campaign for IBS/Israel Radio consists solely of white-on-black text and sound effects: "Without a model, her agent, her dresser Without her nonsense. In fact, no nonsense at all."
The humor is subtler in Dallas agency Dieste & Partners' Best Public Service Announcement winner for Nelson Tobedo Health Resource Center. Two teens are making out when the girl's father bursts in, ready to strangle her boyfriend. The boy holds up a condom in self-defense. "A condom could save your life," the text reads. "Use it."
A romantic scenario ends differently in the Best Cinema Commercial winner, by GGT Direct Advertising/TBWA in London, for Women Against Rape. A couple's date is narrated by increasingly frantic text. "You drink. You dance You kiss. She stops. You don't. What are you doing?" The message: "2 out of 3 rape victims know their attacker."
Gold World Medal winners for craft and technique included Deutsch's slice-of-life IKEA spots--in one, a marital spat ends with the text, "Time for a sofa bed?" The campaign won in the Best 10- or 15-second Spot category. Industrial Light & Magic's Marfalump character helped BBDO's Pepsi/Star Wars tie-in take home the Best Animation (Computer) honor, while Tokyo's Spoon won in the Best Animation (Noncomputer) category for an elegant, pencil-sketched Shiseido spot.
FCB San Francisco's stylish Sega ad, with its John Woo-like action sequences, won Best Special Effects and Best Cinematography. Slogan DDB S.A. in Montevideo, Uruguay, took the Best Humorous Spot prize for "Born Out of Love," a New Beetle ad in which classic VW bugs mate.
Winning ads veered from the silly to the disturbing, but, as Nieman says, "Simple visual stories that are provocative and surprising, and offer the viewer some reward, tend to do well." K
A safe-sex PSA (top r.) and (from top) ads for France Telecom, Women Against Rape, FoxSports.com and IBS/Israel Radio won Best of Show awards.