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The Cannes Fes­ti­val of Cre­ativ­ity is re­shap­ing its Lions awards pro­gramme for 2018 on­wards “chang­ing the struc­ture and breath of the awards more sig­nif­i­cantly than ever.” It has de­cided to elim­i­nate more than 100 sub­cat­e­gories, awards that made lit­tle sense, were too ex­pen­sive and were gen­er­ally too com­pli­cated to en­ter. Gone al­to­gether are the Cy­ber Lions, In­te­grated Lions and the Promo and Ac­ti­va­tion Lions. The Brand Ex­pe­ri­ence, Cre­ative E-com­merce and So­cial & In­flu­encer Lions are be­ing re­launched as a sep­a­rate set of awards, as are the Char­ity and NGO Lions. A new en­try cap means that each piece of work can only be en­tered into a max­i­mum of six sep­a­rate con­tests. The Lions fes­ti­val will also be shorter; in­stead of run­ning for eight days, the fes­ti­val agenda will be lim­ited to five. There will be more fi­nan­cial as­sis­tance to at­ten­dees. The price of a Com­plete del­e­gate pass will be vastly re­duced in or­der to keep costs down and en­cour­age at­ten­dance. A new pro­gram al­lo­cat­ing one Young Del­e­gate badge for agen­cies that en­tered more than 15 dif­fer­ent sub­mis­sions in 2017 is be­ing in­tro­duced to en­cour­age fresher and younger voices to at­tend and ex­pe­ri­ence the event. Some 650 free young Lions del­e­gate passes will be dis­trib­uted in 2018. Cannes Lions have also worked with lo­cal busi­nesses to mit­i­gate ex­pense, with a freeze on ho­tel rates, free wifi all over the Fes­ti­val, fixed taxi price and fixed price del­e­gate menus in over 50 restau­rants. The show will also be streamed live and for free across mul­ti­ple plat­forms so that non-at­ten­dees can tune in. It will also be broad­cast via open-air lo­ca­tions through­out Cannes. These changes have been well-re­ceived by agen­cies no­tably Publi­cis Groupe CEO Arthur Sadoun who ear­lier stated that his Groupe would not par­tic­i­pate in the 2018 awards. Om­ni­com com­mented: “Cannes ac­knowl­edged that af­ter 60 years it was time to hit the re-set but­ton and that’s smart. We ap­plaud the steps the fes­ti­val has taken af­ter seek­ing in­put from Om­ni­com and many agen­cies and CMOS across our in­dus­try. We are es­pe­cially pleased to see the fes­ti­val re­new their fo­cus on in­spir­ing and en­er­gis­ing the next gen­er­a­tion of cre­ative tal­ent — which, of course, is what the fes­ti­val is — and should be — all about.” “The changes for 2018 are more rad­i­cal and ex­cit­ing than we’ve seen in the last few years,” says Si­mon Cook, Di­rec­tor of Cre­ative Ex­cel­lence at Cannes Lions. “We feel it’s the right thing for the fes­ti­val, and for ev­ery­one in­volved.”

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