Jared Leto: 'Advertising can't save your brand, you can't resuscitate yak turd'

Hollywood actor Jared Leto took to the main stage at Cannes today to discuss creative thinking and his "creative evolution" as an actor, musician and businessman.

Jared Leto: poses for selfie during Cannes talk
Jared Leto: poses for selfie during Cannes talk

Sharing his thoughts on the advertising world, Leto said that "when advertising is creative, it's not advertising; it's transcendent, it's art".

Advertising can't save the internet, the world and certainly not your brand. First of all, you have to make something great.

However Leto - who posed for a selfie with a fan during his talk - also said that parts of the industry were guilty of bad work, adding that advertising could "not save the world".

"Advertising can't save the internet, the world and certainly not your brand. First of all, you have to make something great. You can't resuscitate a stinking pile of yak turd - and god knows you've tried," he told the appreciative audience to sounds of whoops and cheers across the auditorium.

Authentic truth

Leto said that it was the role of advertising to explain how brands can make people's lives better.

"When brands speak, reaching out to try to communicate, the most important thing is authenticity. Telling the truth. Otherwise just leave me the fuck alone.

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"If you can't do that, at the very least make the advertising beautiful or titillating."

Learning from failure

Speaking about his personal success, Leto said failure was important, but bravery was also required.

"You have to fail. Sometimes you succeed more from failure than from success. You fail, fail, fail and learn."

He added: "As an artist I can say 'fuck you' and do whatever I want. But I believe everyone should take that approach. I have 24 people who work with me and I value that. [For] people who take risks, there's a lot of reward."

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