Here’s What 7 Cannes Lions Jury Presidents Will Look For in 2019

Bravery, boldness and simplicity are key themes

What are jury presidents looking for at Cannes this year?
Cannes Lions

While it’s yet to be seen how specific industry predictions will present themselves at the Cannes Lions this June, it’s clear that this year’s jury presidents have their eyes, ears and brains trained on what could emerge as Grand Prix victors.

Listening to jury presidents share their experiences with their judging colleagues during the festival is fascinating. There is constructive dialogue, some back and forth and a few arguments that happen in the hallowed halls of the Palais. But it all comes down to each jury president setting the tone and bar of expectation for the work, which is very high.

To that end, we asked some of Cannes’ 2019 jury presidents their thoughts on what they expect to see, and what they look forward to most in their category.

Trevor Robinson, founder and executive creative director, Quiet Storm

Category: Industry Craft

Adweek: What excites you most about the past and present work in your category?

What I’ve always enjoyed most is the way that a great piece of work can make time seem to slow down, and it’s as though I’m observing a piece of art. For me, this is the exciting difference between looking at a concept for a TV script—or even watching a piece of film—to when I’m looking at brilliant pieces of typography or graphic design. I hope to see this across the category this year.

What do you expect to see in Cannes-worthy work this year in your category?

I expect to see a high quota of brilliant work from all over the world. But to be quite honest, I hope to see something unexpected.

What I’m hoping for is some courageous, brave, thought-provoking work; something that veers from the norm. I’m forever looking forward to seeing things that I’ve not seen before, executed beautifully.

In the past, we’ve always been spoilt with an abundance of excellently laid out and well-crafted executions, but what I’m also looking for in the future work is the added potential of ideas, interwoven with powerful displays of artistry and skill.

What do you hope you’ll see in the overall work at Cannes in 2019? Conversely, what do you hope you won’t see in this year’s entries?

I’m hoping to feel a pang of envy, that feeling of “I wish I did that,” which most creatives reluctantly admit is the best barometer of a good idea. What I don’t want to see is repetition. I’m hoping the work will be bold, very bold, this year.

Last year’s Cannes Lions Industry Craft winners

Jose Miguel Sokoloff, president of MullenLowe Group Creative Council and chief creative officer, MullenLowe Group UK

Category: Radio

What excites you most about the past and present work in your category?

Radio is one of those categories where budget is not a constraint. It can be done relatively cheaply by anyone, anywhere. However, we’ve heard many times before that it’s hard to make good radio, and the lack of “bling” to hide behind makes it even harder. It is purely about the idea—how smart, how relevant, how entertaining and how different it is, which is the most exciting thing about this category to me.

Radio starts hyper-local and sometimes can become truly global, but sometimes when radio spots are very local, fundamental parts can get lost in translation. Having an open mind and giving every single entry the respect it deserves should help and is the least we can do for the teams around the world who submit their work. I hope we find the next big thing in radio this year.

What do you expect to see in Cannes-worthy work this year in your category?

I expect to hear things that capture my imagination and reward me for the time I’ve spent listening to them. I’m looking for clever stories that make a point while using the platform in a way to make it more relevant. It is about the use of sound, about audio, about what we hear. And while technology has made it easier to realize an idea, it still has to be strong enough to tell a story without any visual aid. Most of all, I’m looking for entries that allow me to enter their world, capture my imagination and never let me go.

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