Cannes: Canada picks up two more Lions

Grip picks up a Silver in Cyber for its agency website, while Leo Burnett garners a Bronze for work with P&G.

At the third night of Cannes Lions awards ceremonies, Canada adds two more, bringing the total to nine.


Toronto-based Grip Limited’s own website has earned the agency a Silver Lion. The site, which features bold orange and black text and expandable vertical columns, went live in April and was designed to be a middle ground between minimalist gallery-style sites and complex environments loaded with information, associate partner Colin Craig said on Grip’s blog, Big Orange Slide. The site includes all the info you’d expect to find, as well as infographics with staff survey data, a live feed from Grip’s blog and a simplified mobile version.

There were two Grand Prix winners in the Cyber category – first, Volkswagen Sweden’s ‘The Fun Theory’ by DDB Stockholm, which promoted its Bluemotion Technology and, instead of listing the car’s enviro benefits, showed that it’s fun to drive. DDB made being responsible fun in innovative ways, by turning stairs into piano keys that actually played music, and adding sound effects to garbage cans, for example. The videos made of the executions were posted on Facebook and YouTube and became one of the most spread viral campaigns of all time. The films could be seen on the blog, and on a connected site, visitors could learn more about how Volkswagen applied this theory to its cars and book test drives. They also held a contest for people to submit their own ‘Fun Theory’ ideas.

For the second Grand Prix campaign, Nike Livestrong Foundation’s ‘Chalkbot,’ Wieden + Kennedy in Portland created a social media movement around a robot that dispenses chalk messages on the streets. Capitalizing on the Tour de France tradition of writing in chalk on the streets, it allowed people to send messages through SMS, web banners, Twitter or to be written by the robot.

Over the course of a month, the Chalkbot gained over 4,000 followers on Twitter, received over 36,000 messages and printed thousands of them over 13 stages of the Tour de France, while driving several thousand miles during the 25-day event.

Jury president Jeff Benjamin, CCO at Crispin Porter & Bogusky in the US, noted that this year, two distinct themes emerged. First, the notion of ‘invisible technology,’ innovation that simply seems to happen as if by magic. ‘Technology will reach its peak when you don’t even know it’s there,’ he said.

Second, the notion of tying digital to real experiences and real time, perfectly illustrated by Chalkbot. ‘Digital can’t be confined to a computer anymore,’ said Rob Rasmussen, CCO of Tribal DDB in the US. ‘If you look across all entries, you see consumers are so connected to brands and digital had kind of become the glue between them, but it’s definitely stepped out to all aspects of their lives.’ Continued on page 2…


Canada’s lone entries on the press shortlist managed a full conversion, giving a Bronze campaign Lion to Leo Burnett and P&G for ‘Artist,’ ‘Rocker’ and ‘Cowboy’ for Cheer Dark.

The campaign, which features rich B&W portraits of each of the eponymous sterotypes, is minimally adorned with copy – just a small shot of a Cheer Dark bottle and the tagline: ‘For Flattering Blacks.’ The ads were shortlisted in both the art direction and photography categories of press, and bagged its campaign Lion for camera craft, helmed by Ishu.

Jury president Mark Tutssel, global CCO of Leo Burnett, calls 2010 ‘a renaissance year for print.’ The jury looked at 4,820 entries, shortlisted 395, and chose 73 winners.

At the end of the odyssey, Tutssel says, ‘great print elicits not only emotion, but participation; great print treats you with intelligence and rewards you accordingly.’

Tutssel says that while print may be the oldest medium of all, it still has a fresh ability to break through, and he hopes the work the jury curated will reignite the industry. ‘People still read, and we have to do our job accordingly and produce world class stellar communication in this channel,’ he said.

The Grand Prix was originally awarded to Ogilvy Mexico for the Scrabble campaign ‘Abraham,’ ‘Efren’ and ‘Otto,’ but it was later declared ineligible, as it had been entered previously. Ogilvy Mexico’s loss was AlmapBBDO São Paulo, Brazil’s gain, as its originally Gold Lion-winning campaign ‘Bono,’ ‘Eminem,’ ‘Amy,’ ‘Britney’ and ‘Marilyn’ for Billboard magazine took the Grand Prix by default.



Canada’s lone design shortlist contender did not make it to the medal round. The Design jury gave its Grand Prix to Toyota, for ‘IQ Font,’ created by Happiness Brussels. The font was created by skillfully driving the IQ car in the shape of letters, then using software to convert each to code and ultimately build a useable font.

The whole effort was filmed, and the resulting YouTube video drove tons of media impressions and free PR, and ultimately converted to test drives – all with zero media dollars. Plus 24,000 souls downloaded the IQ font.

Jury president Steff Geissbuhler of C&G Partners said the clever use of technology stood out: ‘It’s very sophisticated, innovative, true design in all ways.’ Jury member Glenn Tutssel, ECD of The Brand Union, commented on the font’s intrinsic link to the car and its technology.

When asked if Canada is lagging on the Design front – we had 44 entries and one lone shortlist, Vancouver-based Rethink’s laser die-cut business cards for BLIM – Canadian judge Louis Gagnon, CD and partner with Montreal-based Paprika, responds: ‘We have a lot of very good designers in Canada, very good illustrators, photographers, there’s no reason to not win in this competition.’

He explains that more effort is needed in the presentation of entries, and that a board with five pics and small tags doesn’t paint a complete picture, while entries with great video cases have a big influence on judges’ opinions.

As to whether Canada is satisfactorily represented at Cannes in Design, Gagnon opines that the fact that it’s a young category, in tandem with the cost of entry – ‘in my opinion, participation is very expensive for a design studio’ – are probably limiting factors. That said, Gagnon vows to return and encourages more studios to participate. ‘I want to come back next year with a project, and I want visibility for Canada. It’s important for Canadian studios to have recognition.’