In the third of a special series of Ad Breaks celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, we have selected five classic UK commercials that might have won the Grand Prix but didn't
Levi's: 'Swimmer' (starts at 00:03) - UK
Silver in 1992
Not only did this iconic commercial for Levi's 501s fail to win the 1992 Grand Prix, it wasn't even awarded a Gold Lion... its creators had to settle for Silver instead. Even though BBH's long-running campaign transformed the fortunes of Levi's, none of the outstanding commercials they made together was awarded the top prize at Cannes.
Agency: Bartle Bogle Hegarty
Stella Artois: 'Returning Hero' (starts at 01:06) - UK
Gold in 2001
Like all the great Stella Artois commercials in the 'reassuringly expensive' campaign, this ad is a perfect combination of humour and pathos in a beautifully told story. As well as stressing the core proposition that Stella is a premium product, this campaign also managed to promote the notion that the lager has a great heritage.
Agency: Lowe Lintas
Director: Frank Budgen
Honda: 'Cog' (starts at 02:40) - UK
Gold in 2003
The shooting of this commercial was so complex that nine months were set aside to make it. The first six months was spent planning and testing before two-minute-long segments were filmed over four days and then edited together. Was it worth it? Honda estimates that worldwide sales rose by nearly £400m on the back of 'Cog'... so, yes it was.
Director: Antoine Bardou-Jacquet
Sony: 'Balls' (starts at 04:45) - UK
Gold in 2006
As with Honda's 'Cog', when this commercial for the Sony Bravia television was made, a great premium was placed on doing it for real and the production team really did bounce a quarter of a million rubber balls down Filbert and Leavenworth streets in San Francisco. It was widely tipped to win the Grand Prix but lost out to a Guinness ad.
Director: Nicolai Fuglsig
T-Mobile: 'Life's For Sharing' (starts at 07:18) - UK
Gold in 2009
Like the previous two commercials in this selection, this ad for T-Mobile filled an entire ad break when it was first shown in 2009. Filming it was a logistical nightmare: furtively placed cameras captured the reaction of the general public as the dancers revealed themselves before an outer ring of administrators desperately chased anyone who'd pulled an interesting face to ask them to sign a release form.
Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi
Director: Michael Gracey