Press Lions Grand Prix winner disqualified

CANNES 2010 - The Press Lions Grand Prix has been awarded to Almap BBDO Sao Paolo's campaign for Billboard magazine, but only after the jury's original choice was disqualified at the last minute for having entered the Awards previously.

Billboard magazine campaign by Almap BBDO Sao Paolo
Billboard magazine campaign by Almap BBDO Sao Paolo

The jury first awarded the Press Lions Grand Prix to Ogilvy Mexico for its Scrabble campaign for Mattel.

The president of the Press Lions, Mark Tutssel, global chief creative officer of Leo Burnett Worldwide, called Ogilvy's Scrabble campaign "a beautiful series of stories".

The Scrabble campaign involved clever wordplay of making sure a single vowel was used in every word of a story to create an effective, powerful copy-led message.
 
"It was not only appropriate for the brand, it connected with people and people's love of words," said Tutssel. "This was a classic print ad. It was an ad that couldnt have been done in any other media."

However, moments before last night's awards ceremony was due to take place, organisers disqualified the campaign after realising it was ineligible for the 2010 Festival because it had been entered before.

In an embarrassing twist, it transpires the campaign was entered into Cannes 2008 but had failed to make even the shortlist.

Ogilvy Mexico claim they were unaware of the rules against submitting work more than once.

Almap BBDO São Paulo's campaign for Billboard campaign was elevated from a Gold Lion to a Grand Prix.

The campaign featured pictures of music stars, including Bono and Amy Winehouse, composed of a mosaic of images of other performers they are similar to - in Winehouse's case Sid Vicious, Billie Holiday, Marvin Gaye and Sarah Vaughan.

It proved to be a strong year for UK agencies too, with Gold Lions being awarded to DDB UK, BBH and M&C Saatchi, a Silver Lion to Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R, and two Bronze Lions each to Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and JWT.  

In addition to the Grand Prix, the Press Lions jury awarded 12 Golds, 21 Silver and 39 Bronze Lions.

DDB UK was awarded a Gold Lion for its campaign supporting Volkswagen's sponsorship of independent cinema. Golds also went to BBH for its widely acclaimed work for St John Ambulance and M&C Saatchi for its campaign for Dixons.co.uk.

RKCR/Y&R won a Silver Lion for its Shock and Souls Clothing Store campaign. AMV BBDO won two Bronze Lions for its Doritos campaign while JWT's Kleenex tissues campaign earned two Bronze Lions.

Despite this year's haul (73 awards) being less than half the number of accolades awarded in the press category at last year's festival (193), Tutssell insisted there had been a lot of really good stuff, but that the bar for winners had been set incredibly high.

"2010 was a renaissance year for print", he said. "The year for words and pictures. Great print work, really great print work, elicits not only emotion but participation. It invites you into the ad itself. It requires you to step into the brand and step into the brand and interact with the brand."

"Print has the ability to have this one to one conversation at a level that a lot of others mediums can't do."