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    A country made of trash swamps the Cannes Lions


    Get your tickets for this years show here: June 17 to 21, 2019
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    What creative doesn’t dream of winning a Lion? If you’ve made it on that list, you have made it in your career, no doubt. The festival is now shorter, more than 120 sub-categories have been erased or consolidated and one thing is for sure: Cannes is still the rising star for creatives and geeks of all kinds and the quality is quite inspirational.


    story | Patrick Weiss, Reto Bloesch, Stefan Jermann
    edit, photography, video | Stefan Jermann


    While we spent eight days in 2017 at the Festival, this year was a compact five days, starting Monday morning. While the decision at first left some with a question mark, we definitely think it was a good move. People simply have less time on their hands and five days in Cannes during the festival are intense, that’s if you are not only sipping your rosé all day, but focus on the very interesting key notes, discussions, presentations and gatherings of all kinds.

    We’d like to point out a couple of campaigns that made it big in Cannes, not only because they deserve the applause, but also because we are blown away on how creatives today truly push the boundaries of the unexpected.




    Impressions from the Cannes Lions Creative Campus, the awards exhibition space and a crazy installation at the beach.

    “We want to shrink this nation (Trash Isles). We don’t want any more plastic added.” 

    Al Gore, former U.S. Vice President and first honorary citizen of the Trash Isles


    The Trash Island campaign is one of the most beautiful and sophisticated campaigns that we have ever come across. They created their own currency, passports and everything it takes to establish a nation.



    AMV BBDO claimed the world’s first country made entirely from plastic trash in the ocean so that other countries would be obliged to clean it up.

    In the North Pacific there is so much plastic, an area of trash the size of France has formed. Governments have simply ignored it. The LADBible, an online mag, found a way to ensure they couldn’t. By turning the country sized trash patch into an official country. On World Oceans Day, The Plastic Oceans Foundation and LadBible submitted an application to The United Nations to recognize The Trash Isles as an official country. Because if it is recognised as an official country, then other countries are obliged to help clean it up. The campaign created an identity for the country and asked the public to support it by becoming citizens.

    At the start of the campaign the issue was rarely talked about and the public were unaware of the issue, by the end of it global new channels such as Fox News, CNN and Europe 1 had covered it, major publications like National Geographic, Reuters and the Daily Mail wrote about it and more than half a billion people had been reached by the campaign.

    By turning the country sized trash patch into an official country the campaign not only achieved this but allowed them to understand the scale of the problem.

    The campaign was targeted at LADBible’s young, politically active audience – the generation that would have to deal with this problem if not addressed and the wider public who were unaware of the issue. Big name celebrities signed up and helped reach the full range of the audience, there were environmentalists such as Ale Gore and Sir David Attenborough all the way to popular hip hop artist and famous actors such as Pharrell Williams and Chris Hemsworth.

    HOPE (International Red Cross)

    This is the kind of film that changes lifes and attitudes and it sure won the Film Craft Grand Prix. Watch it yourself and you’ll understand why. The footage is absolutely heartbreaking. A little girl in the back seat of her father’s car, bleeding from an injury to her abdomen. The father, racing through the countryside tries to calm his crying daughter, then tells her she must stay awake until they get to the hospital. When they arrive, the hospital has been bombed and the girl has mostlikely passed away.

    Hope is directed by Sra. Rushmore and Blur Films Madrid for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). The nearly two minute film, which takes place in a war torn country, states, “No hospitals. No hope.”

    MY LINE (Colombia Ministry of Coummuncations and Technology)


    MullenLowe SSP3 has been awarded the first Innovation ‘Grand Prix’ in Latin America for the My Line campaign. ‘My Line’ aims to make use of legacy phones and make information available for the population that owns them, to bring internet access to those without a computer or smartphone. Powered by technology that ‘translates’ the voice into data and vice-versa, the platform turns a traditional landline number into a resource that people can call for information no matter the moment, place or device.

    This is a wonderful social project and a perfect example on how advertising can truly help make the world a better place.

    Stay tuned to read our reports from the 2019 Cannes Lions.