Ten noteworthy sessions at Cannes Lions Live, 2021

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The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity takes place between 21-25 June 2021 and brings together the best creative minds in the advertising and creative communications industry.

In previous years, the festival has been held in Cannes, but this time around, it’s fully digital. Expect a whole host of ‘on demand’ creative films and documentaries, an impressive lineup of speakers and the Cannes Lions Awards being broadcast live. Here are ten sessions to look out for if you’re planning to grab a virtual pass and tune in.

1. The Awards

Cannes Lions is also known as the ‘Oscars for Advertising’, with the awards being a major part of the event. There are 28 awards in total, covering these themes: ‘Communication’; ‘Craft’; ‘Entertainment’; ‘Experience’; ‘Good’; ‘Health’; ‘Impact’; ‘Innovation’ and ‘Reach’. The winners will be announced each day of the event during a 90-minute show. Catch the Awards live at 12:00 (BST) throughout the festival.

2. The Glass Lions for Change Debrief

The Glass Lion is an award for creative work and ideas that intend to change the world and, in particular, address gender inequality or prejudice issues. This show features Bozoma Saint John, the Chief Marketing Officer for Netflix, who is also the Jury President for this award. Access this live at 14:35 (BST) on 25 June.

3. NFTs: Now and Next

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are the digital answer to collectables. They are a unique, digital, intangible asset that can be bought and sold. You might have seen the news back in March 2021 when the major auction house, Christie’s, sold the first NFT (a digital artwork) for just over $69m. It was a watershed moment for the creative industry. In this session, Neda Whitney, Head of Marketing at Christie’s, talks about the exciting and exponential growth of NFTs and their future potential. See this via ‘Creativity on Demand’.

4. The Entertainment Lions for Music Debrief

The Entertainment Lions for Music celebrates original music content and creative musical collaborations. The ‘Debrief’ session for this award features the winner(s) talking about their work, plus data analysis and dialogue with Jury President Wyclef Jean – solo superstar, founder of the Fugees, and all-round cultural force in the music industry. Watch this live at 14:30 (BST) on 23 June.

5. Shaping the Future Through Creativity, Collaboration and Eco-innovation

Parley is a movement that encourages creatives, thinkers and leaders to raise awareness and collaborate on projects that will put an end to the destruction of the world’s beautiful and fragile oceans. In this session, Cyrill Gutsch, CEO and Parley Founder, talks about the vital work of Parley and how the creative community can lead the way in solving some of the biggest environmental challenges of our time. Here’s a preview. View it via ‘Creativity on Demand’.

6. High Performance to Hyper Creativity: Sport’s Love Affair with Technology

This mainstage-worthy content offers a close look at how high-performance tech meets hyper-creative storytelling. It features two-times Formula One champion, Fernando Alonso, along with Alpine Racing and Canon, to bring you a next-generation sports experience. This one should get your adrenaline pumping! Check it out via ‘Creativity on Demand.’

7. Future Consumer 2023

WGSN is a global leader in the trend forecasting space, specialising in consumer and design insights. The company helps brands and innovators stay relevant and create the right products for future consumers. In this session, Carla Buzasi, President and CEO of WGSN, presents the annual Future Consumer 2023 report that looks at how consumers will think, feel, and act over the coming years. She’ll also dive into the buyer personas that creatives will need to connect with when selling their products. Preview the session here. Access via ‘Creativity on Demand’.

8. CMOs in the Spotlight

CMOs in the Spotlight features top Chief Marketing Officers from the likes of Amazon and McDonalds. This looks to be a particularly inspiring and educational session, where you can get insights into some of the best advertising campaigns in the world. For example, Amazon’s Claudine Cheever and team are the creative masterminds behind the Alexa Super Bowl adverts – which, if you haven’t seen – you really must. They’re a chuckle to say the least. Check out the one where Alexa loses her voice. Catch the session via ‘Creativity on Demand’.

9. The New Marketing Mandate for Business Success

Stan Rapp is a marketing legend, also known as the ‘Godfather of One to One Marketing’. He co-founded the highly successful RAPP agency (which became a $600m global enterprise), co-authored six marketing books, and was recognised by Advertising Age as having helped shape the history of marketing in the 20th Century. In this session, Rapp (along with Sebastian Jespersen, CEO of Vertic) talks about ‘Share of Life’, which is all about embedding brands into consumers’ online existence. See this via ‘Creativity on Demand’.

10. The Design Lions Debrief

The Design Lions award celebrates visual craftsmanship. In this ‘Debrief’, you’ll get to learn more about Jury President Pum Lefebure, as well as get insights from the winner(s) of this award. Lefebure is the co-founder and CCO of Design Army in Washington, D.C. She’s been hailed as a rising star by Washington Business Journal’s ‘Women Who Mean Business’. She’s also been spotted by Graphic Design USA as one of their ‘Top 50 People to Watch’. Catch it live at 17:00 (BST) on 21 June.

To view the full schedule, and get a preview of many more creative films and documentaries to be shown at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, visit the official website. 

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