Cannes Lions announced today that the event will not take place in October as previously planned and the next edition of the festival will run June 21-25, 2021. Coronavirus has played havoc with the industry events calendar and at this point it’s still unclear how long social distancing guidelines need to be adhered to, or when international travel restrictions will be eased up.
Some of the event’s sponsors told VAN they weren’t particularly enthusiastic about the new October date, as the weather would be different, attendance would be significantly lower, and the costs would be difficult to justify in the current economic environment.
Philip Thomas, Chairman, Cannes Lions, commented: “Cannes Lions at its core has always been about creativity and the Lions. We realise that the creative community has other challenges to face, and simply isn’t in a position to put forward the work that will set the benchmark. The marketing and creative industries, in common with so many others, are currently in turmoil, and it’s clear that we can play our small part by removing all speculation about the Festival this year. 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.”
Simon Cook, Managing Director, 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.”