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Bounds of creativity, the most innovative people in the industry, sandy beaches, and French cuisine. The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity has fallen upon the creative and marketing industry once again. If you’re not up to speed with the five-day festival, we’re here to give you the lowdown on the top events to look forward to, news updates, and what makes this year’s festival different. We’ll be sure to cover the festival as the days roll by, but for now, here’s a breakdown on what Cannes Lions is and what the creative industry is buzzing about.

How did Cannes Lions come to be?

Bearing its roots in 1954, Cannes Lions has given global recognition to the world’s most authentic and cutting-edge influencers in the marketing and creative communications industry. By connecting the worldwide network of the creative world, Cannes has provided the opportunity for self-expressers and innovators alike to celebrate, build, and learn through its iconic event hosted every year in Cannes, France.

With more than 16,000 attendees, Cannes pulls from brands, activists, artists, and more from all around the world. 200+ speakers, ranging from Conan O’Brien to the CEO of YouTube Susan Wojcicki, are taking the stage this year over the course of five days, covering topics like “Five Campaigns that Shook the Advertising World” and “What Creativity Can Do.” For Cannes Lions, creativity is, and will always, drive the world.

This year, after fielding some critique, Cannes decided to revamp a few things:

  1. The festival is now five days, not eight. Cannes is out for “quality over quantity,” refocusing purely on creativity and cutting out the rest.
  2. Companies can submit to six Lions categories max. The best work will shine and juries won’t get fatigued.
  3. Pass prices are down! So are prices for hotels, taxis, and more, making the festival more accessible to companies and creatives of all stripes.  

Here are this year’s awards categories:

  1. Communication
  2. Craft
  3. Entertainment
  4. Experience
  5. Good
  6. Health
  7. Impact
  8. Innovation
  9. Reach

In the Cannes News Now: #WomenCannes

Calling all lionesses! An anonymous collective is calling for women to wear black at the festival. In a movement called #WomenCannes, the group is hoping to bring their social movement to light by wearing black as a statement of solidarity and safety. They’re also aiming to use their platform to reflect upon the sexual misconduct that takes place in the ad industry and hoping to shine a light on the lack of qualified women who are excluded from the festival.

Their website also features a call to action for agencies to submit the women they’re sending on behalf of their company, hoping to garner support from fellow female “lionesses” while on stage, celebrating the nominations and awards won by females in the industry. #WomenCannes also features the #TimesUpAdvertising hashtag as a part of the US-stemmed group aimed to address and reveal the gender inequality and sexual harassment in the advertising world. These hashtags are now circling the social media, with companies, and men and women alike, showing their support for the campaign.

Speaking of #PowerfulWomen, Tarana Burke, founder of the #MeToo Movement, is also a speaker this year! She’ll be taking the stage on Thursday, June 21 to talk about what inspired her now 11-year devotion to work and what she’s doing to keep the ball rolling when it comes to sexual assault awareness.

Now What?

So, now that you’re up to speed with all things Cannes and all things Creativity, be sure to keep checking our social media and blog for coverage on the festival, with updates on our favorite events and what Cannes has brought to the table in 2018. For now, au revoir!

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