Cannes Lions: 10 more Lions for India on Day 3; Dentsu Creative bags another Grand Prix

Besides the Grand Prix, the Indian contingent bagged two Gold, five Silver and two Bronze Lions

by Team PITCH
Published - June 23, 2022
11 minutes To Read
Cannes Lions: 10 more Lions for India on Day 3; Dentsu Creative bags another Grand Prix

India’s stunning rendezvous with Cannes Lions 2022 continues with 10 more lions–one Grand Prix, two Gold Lions, five Silver Lions, and two Bronze Lions across Brand Experience & Activation (1 Grand Prix, 3 Silver), Creative Business Transformation (1 Bronze), Creative Commerce (2 Gold), Innovation (1 Silver), Mobile (1 Silver), and Creative Effectiveness Lions (1 Bronze). 

The contingent also added 50 more shortlists to its already raging tally of 57, displaying one of its finest performances at the French Riveria. 

Brand Experience & Activation Winners

The leading campaign of the year from India, ‘The Unflitered Selfie’ won a Grand Prix (Use of Mobile Devices) and one Silver Lion (New Realities & Voice Activation). The campaign created by Dentsu Creative for Vice Media now has two Grand Prix, one Gold, two Silver, and two Bronze Lions in its kitty and around 24 shortlists thus far.

The campaign is essentially an immersive Instagram filter that is designed to be experienced either inside or outside the British Museum to scan some of the most disputed artefacts kept within. Once scanned, the filter tells the stories of these artefacts from the perspective of communities they were stolen from. 

Speaking about the campaign and its impact, Brand Experience & Activation Lions Jury President Yasuharu Sasaki (Chief Creative Officer, Dentsu Inc. Japan) said, “It is a strong and provocative experiment done appropriately at a time when cultural appropriation is a hot topic. The power of journalism is being realised with the use of the right technology.”  

Amit Wadhwa, CEO India, Dentsu Creative said, “And it’s a hat-trick!! It is Day 3 at Cannes and we are on top of the world to win yet another Grand Prix and Silver Lion. It is surreal to take back 2 Grand Prix in addition to the many metals. The entire team who worked on this - both present and ex are over the moon with the performance. While we party hard for this one, we also salute the level of global creativity and innovation displayed at the festival. These wins will not only give us the high but would also propel us to raise our standards even higher for the next year. Fingers Crossed!”

‘The Nominate Me Selfie’ won a Silver in the category under Use of Mobile & Devices Section. 

A campaign created by FCB, it was designed for Political Shakti - a non-partisan women's collective passionate about female leaders in politics, and appeared in The Times of India. The campaign teamed up with 140 NGOs that reached 45000 villages to mobilize female party workers to use the ubiquitous WhatsApp to send their “Nominate-me-selfies” to their local party leaders, urging them for a ticket to contest elections. As hundreds of selfies started to pour in, women’s representation was amplified into a national issue that made front pages, garnering panel discussions and widespread coverage.  

Lastly, ‘Shah Rukh Khan My Ad’ campaign – created by Ogilvy for Cadbury Celebrations, in an attempt to support local small shop owners to get over the impact of the the pandemic by generating a customised campaign for their business with Shah Rukh Khan as its face – picked a Silver Lion under Tech-led Brand Experience subcategory. 

India had 10 shortlists in the category.

Creative Business Transformation Winners

The only shortlist from India in the category, ‘Smart Fill’ initiative of Unilever, conceptualised by VMLY&R Commerce won a Silver Lion under the Brand Purpose & Impact subcategory. 

Under the initiative, Unilever installed refill stations at select retail outlets across the country wherein people could refill any plastic container with required Unilever products to control plastic wastage and allow the consumers to get only enough products as required. The idea was based on the core thought of reusing and recycling of containers, a common practice in most Indian homes. 

Creative Commerce Winners

‘Smart Fill’ won a Gold Metal in Creative Commerce Lions under the Sustainable Commerce subcategory. 

Another Gold came for McCann for its ‘Shagun Ka Lifafa’ campaign created for Ujjivan Small Finance Bank under the subcategory of Social Behaviour and Cultural Insight.

The campaign turned the shagun ka lifafa that people usually give the newlyweds as a gift into a form to start a bank account for the ladies who depend on the men of the house for their financial needs. An important step in the direction of financial inclusion of women, the campaign prompted women to set up their own bank accounts and they could use the one rupee coin that comes with the lifafa (packet) as the first deposit in Ujjivan Small Finance Bank. 

Reacting to the win, McCann spokesperson said, “We are proud of the work done for Ujjivan Small Finance Bank (Shagun Ka Lifafa). When an idea is born from authentic culture and finds a meaningful role in people’s lives, it’s bound to have a positive impact. Our team led by Ashish Chakravarty along with Sambit Mohanty and our McCann India team make this idea come to life and resonate. An acknowledgement at Cannes of work well done is fantastic.” 

There were a total of four shortlists in this category. 

Innovation Winner

VMLY&R Mumbai’s Grand Prix Health & Wellness Lion winner ‘The Killer Pack’ scored a Silver Lion in Innovation (product innovation) category. 

‘The Killer Pack’ is an innovative 100% biodegradeble packaging for Maxx Flash mosquito repellent, which was lined with 5% active probiotic bacillus thuringiensis to kill mosquito larvae when disposed of in garbage dumps, dustbins and stagnant water. 

VMLY&R CCO Mukund Olety, reacting to all the wins and shortlists, said, “This is turning out to be a fantastic Cannes for us. It feels more amazing when different pieces of work from different teams start picking up. A great testament to the creative culture we are building at VMLY&R. I am of course lucky to be working with such a passionate and talented bunch of people.” 

Mobile Winner

Out of four shortlists, the only win in the category came for Vice Media’s ‘The Unfiltered History Tour’ created by Dentsu Creative as it added a Silver Lion to its kitty under the Mobile-led Creativity subcategory. 

Creative Effectiveness Winner

The only Indian shortlist in the category, ‘Project Free Period’ an initiative by P&G’s Stayfree sanitary pads, conceptualised and executed by DDB Mudra won a Bronze Lion under the Creative Effectiveness for Good subcategory. 

To combat the sex trade in India, Stayfree launched a campaign, dubbed #ProjectFreePeriod, to help women in the sex trade cultivate the skills to break out of prostitution. The campaign, by DDB Mudra Group, shares that woman in the sex trade cherish periods as a time off work. Thus, contrary to the dismay women usually express towards periods, sex workers look forward to them.

The results for Creative Strategy Lions were also announced on day 03, wherein India had no shortlists. 


Possibly India’s best haul in a day, 50 new shortlists were added on day three of the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity 2022. 

The maximum shortlists were scored by ‘Chatpat’, a young brand ambassador for SOS Children’s Villages of India NGO and its campaign ‘No Child Alone. The campaign got 13 shortlists, including three in Direct (not-for-profit/charity/government, use of social platforms, breakthrough on a budget), three in Media (not-for-profit/charity/government, use of stunts, use of social platforms), three in PR (content creation & production, innovative use of influencers, breakthrough on a budget), and four in Social & Influencer (not-for-profit/charity/government, innovative use of influencers, social film series, breakthrough on a budget).

Chatpat is a 10-year-old from Mumbai who is sharing ‘gyaan’ or wisdom about life that will give all adults a run for their money. His chirpy and pithy words of wisdom is getting him followers across platforms and bringing the spotlight on his street-smart solutions to life for all. He has also worked with several brands and campaigns to collect donations for the foundation. 

‘Unbox Me’ campaign for Unaids by  FCB India and FCB Chicago also got six shortlists, including three in PR (innovative use of influencers, cultural insight, social engagement) and three in Social & Influencers (not-for-profit/charity/government, social purpose, cultural insight). The Unbox Me campaign advocates for the rights of transgender children. 

Further, Cadbury Celebrations’ ‘Shah Rukh My Ad’ campaign created by Ogilvy, Political Shakti + The Times of India’s ‘The Nominate Me Selfie’ by FCB, and Vice Media’s ‘The Unfiltered History’ got six shortlists each. 

While ‘Shah Rukh My Ad’ got two in Direct (data-driven targeting, use of digital platforms), two in Creative Data (data-driven targeting, data-enhanced creativity), one in Media (use of digital platforms), and one in Social & Influencers (brand storytelling); ‘The Nominate Me Selfie’ got two in direct (cultural insight, breakthrough on a budget) three in media (use of digital platforms, cultural insight, media/entertainment), and one in Social & Influencer Lions (social purpose). ‘The Unfiltered History’ scored one in PR (content creation & production) and five in Social & Influencers (corporate purpose & social responsibility, market disruption, media/entertainment, brand storytelling, social purpose). 

Next, the Silver Health & Wellness Lion-winning ‘Adeli’ – a unique camapign by Unipads that put menstruating women, also colliquially known as adelis in certain parts of the country, into kitchens – got three shortlists. The campaign created by VMLY&R got shortlisted in PR Lions (corporate purpose & social responsibility, use of events & stunts, social behaviour). 

BBDO India’s ‘See Equal #ShareTheLoad (Integrated)’ campaign for P&G’s Ariel also got three shortlists – one in Media (corporate purpose & social responsibility) and two in PR (single market campaign, consumer goods). 

A part of Ariel’s long-running campaign #ShareTheLoad, this campaign is based on the insight that men are willing to share household chores with other men, but do not do so with their wives. 

The agency got another shortlist in Media Lions (use of ambient media: small scale) for the same brand’s ‘Name Change Pack #ShareTheLoad’ campaign.” These special packs were customised with some of the most common Indian male names instead of the brand name. 

Further, Ogilvy got two shortlists for ‘Perk Disclaimers’ campaign that asked people who tend to take offence quickly, to ‘take it light’. The ad’s voice-over says how one tends to come across a new controversy daily. It is followed by an apology. The apology is then followed by another controversy. The shortlists came in Media Lions (food & drink, use of social platforms). 

Another shortlist for Ogivy came for Cadbury 5 Stars ‘NothingCoin’ in PR Lions (use of technology)

Taking the brand proposition ahead, Cadbury 5 Star launched  NothingCoin, a new form of currency that gets mined while you do nothing. As part of the outdoor activation, the brand took a spin on traditional bank setups and built a branch at Nariman Point in Mumbai wherein consumers can visit this bank, grab a Cadbury 5Star, sit, and do nothing to mine more Nothing Coins on the brand website. These coins could then be traded for goods on a virtual mall and several partner commerce platforms including Swiggy and Jio Mart. 

‘Bringing Back Colors In the Lives of Wevaers’ by Mindshare for Sunlight Detergent got one shortlist in Media (local brands) Lions. The ‘Sunlight Tantir Rong’ initiative aimed to support Bengal’s local handloom weavers was supported by the campaign that brought to light the story of the handloom weavers from West Bengal, their journey and struggles during the pandemic.

The Gold Creative Commerce Lion winning campaign of the day, McCann’s ‘Shagun Ka Lifafa’ for Ujjivan Small Finance Bank got another shortlist in Direct Lions (social behaviour). 

There were no shortlists for India in Creative B2B Lions.