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Digital Cinema Media

What's your creative vision?

Truly capturing an audience with cut-through creativity is cinema's greatest power

Stacey..."cinema is the only channel that can guarantee undivided attention"
Stacey..."cinema is the only channel that can guarantee undivided attention"

In 1954 the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity launched. It wasn’t held in Cannes, but it was inspired by creativity. That year, an international group of cinema advertising companies (now known as SAWA) gathered in Venice to celebrate great ads. Inspired by the International Film Festival, they rightly felt that advertising films deserved their own show with creativity and storytelling at its heart.

The first Festival took place in Venice, with the Lion of Piazza San Marco forming the inspiration for the much-coveted Lion trophy. Over the years, and since moving to Cannes, categories have been added, removed and judged, but we still gather as a global industry to learn from the best, and celebrate great work and its impact on our society.

Now in its 65th year, the Festival has had a major revamp, simplifying and modernising the event to better protect the creativity at its core. Yes, AI, ecommerce, diversity, tech and data will continue to be debated across our industry, but, as we listen, discuss and absorb the key lessons from this year’s festival, we must focus on the benefits, not the features. 

Time to challenge and disrupt
At SXSW earlier this year, Academy Awardnominated filmmaker and director Darren Aronofsky roused the creative world by reminiscing about its roots. He quoted Neil deGrasse Tyson, American astrophysicist and author, who said: "Creativity that satisfi es and affirms your world view is entertainment. Creativity that challenges and disrupts your world view is art." Aronofsky also spoke of the need for storytelling: "It’s an art. It’s a science. I think it’s actually what makes us human."

So why is this more important than ever? It’s because we’re losing the ability to capture people’s attention and inspire them to action. Ever-changing media habits have led to more content, more screens and more ways to connect with audiences, but as an industry, we’re collectively losing our share of voice. As Unilever’s Keith Weed said: "It’s creativity that will break through the clutter and get your brand noticed."

And, in this world of distraction, cinema is the only channel where everyone still puts away their phone and gives their undivided attention for 120 minutes. True impact and achieving cut-through is the hard part, and that’s what cinema provides.

Filmmakers continue to deliver movies meant to be seen on the big screen. There’s nothing quite like the power of sitting in a darkened room in the community of strangers, all watching the same story. Despite the growth of short-form content, there’s a certain magic that continues to inspire cinema’s golden age of creativity and exploration, far removed from the ongoing viewability debate.

We’re also in an enviable position in that we know our fi lm slate far ahead of time. While 2018 has already brought an unprecedented run of blockbusters, 2019 could potentially be one of cinema’s biggest-ever years.

Toy Story 4, Avengers Infinity War – part 2, Frozen 2, The Lego Movie Sequel, Bond 25 and Star Wars: Episode IX are just some of the titles that brands will be aligning with next year. These will be huge cultural moments and, with our 16-week theatrical window, you can experience them only in cinema.

Inspired by that initial brave group of cinema advertising companies, 64 years on, we’re still invested in championing creativity through initiatives such as supporting Cannes, D&AD and Campaign through our own joint awards scheme to celebrate the best cinema campaigns. It’s more important than ever for us all to focus on the fundamentals and continue to invest in, reward and demand the best in creativity. 

Blockbusters and birthdays

10 The age DCM turns this July

13 Number of times I’ve attended Cannes Lions

6 The trusty back-up shoe size carrying me up and down Cannes’ La Croisette

0 Number of other platforms showing Star Wars: Episode IX during its 16-week theatrical window

0 Amount of dual-screening taking place during this summer’s blockbusters