Cannes Lions Festival and Awards cancelled

There will be no Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity or Awards in 2020.

Organisers have followed the international trend of suspending or cancelling planned events for 2020, noting that the COVID-19 (coronavirus) impacts continue to be felt across the world.

On the awards, the organisers said that as creatives shift their focus to the virus and their various business challenges, agencies won’t be “in a position to put forward the work that will set the benchmark”.

Organisers said they wanted to remove uncertainty, so have made the call to focus on the 2021 event, now scheduled for 21 to 25 June.

Adland will not be congregating in France this year

“As the impact from COVID-19 continues to be felt across the world on consumers and our customers across the marketing, creative and media industries, it has become clear to us that our customers’ priorities have shifted to the need to protect people, to serve consumers with essential items and to focus on preserving companies, society and economies,” a statement said.

Philip Thomas, the chairman of Cannes Lions said the marketing and creative industries are currently in turmoil, and the event can play its part by removing speculation about the its future.

“We have tried to make our decisions as early as possible to give the industry total clarity on the situation, and that is why we are announcing this move today,” he said.

Simon Cook managing director of the Cannes Lions, added: “We all look ahead to a more positive time – right now, Cannes Lions will continue to bring the global creative community together and provide inspiration where we can find it. Our recent call for inspirational creative stories from around the world has already garnered hundreds of accounts of our community uniting and showing progress in this crisis. We believe firmly that the Lions continue to offer valuable recognition to that community and we look forward to celebrating and honouring the work in 2021, when the world will hopefully feel more stable, and our community can give their work the focus it deserves.”

The event was originally due to take place from 22 to 26 June this year. It was then postponed to 26 to 30 October. The 2020 event was set to focus on eight themes: Creativity is the business growth engine, Let’s get back to brand, Looking to 2030: Making your business future-fit, Applied creativity: When data, tech and ideas collide, Creative disruption in commerce, Storytelling at scale, Your brand is my experience, and Post-purpose: Brand accountability and activism.

Speakers from CNN, Reckitt Benckiser, Mondelez International, Netflix, Amazon, Droga5, The New York Times, and P&G had been locked in.


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