As we all know by now, Rio de Janeiro triumphed in the Olympic 2016 bidding, beating out Madrid in the very end. The biggest shock, of course, was Chicago bowing out in the first round…meaning Promixity creative Kevin Lynch got his wish. While people on the streets of Windy City are reacting like the President was shot, we can imagine Lynch doing some sort of Chicago Bears Super Bowl Shuffle all over their drying tears.
We spoke briefly with Jim Schmidt, Partner/CD at Downtown Partners, a communications firm that was involved along with Ogilvy Chicago and Element 79 in developing films for the city’s 2016 campaign. Schmidt, as expected, says Chicago was taken aback. “The bid seemed like a very good one and it seemed like they really pulled the carpet from under us. Everybody said it can go any way. Don’t be shocked by surprises. The shock was just that Chicago went out in the first round. Everybody thought it would be Rio/Chicago in the end and everybody was shocked.”
He attributes some of the decision to politics. “You’ve got blocks of judges of IOC members and there are 44 from Europe. There are lots of alliances. I think a lot of people predicted Tokyo would go out in the first round. If you look at the judging breakdown, a lot more people voted for Madrid than we thought. In the end, though, it was a landslide for Brazil.”
Time to rev up the Scranton 2020 bid folks…
More: “Chi-Town Creative Outs Himself as Pro-Rio Site Mastermind”