2017 Epica Awards – winners unveiled

Advertising, Awards, Epica, Festivals

The 2017 edition of Epica Awards saw Grand Prix going to winners from Canada, USA, Poland, Germany and France. The jury decided to award two film Grand Prix this year, one for a film supporting a nonprofit organisation and one for a commercial for an online retailer.

The Network of the Year was designated McCann Worldgroup, while BBDO New York went home with the Agency of the Year title. The Production Company of the Year went to Great Guns.

When it comes of Grand Prix, they were: 

  • Design: “Living Logo” by KBS Canada for Innocence Canada
  • Digital: “Like My Addiction” by BETC (France) for Addict’Aide 
  • Film: 
    • “Evan” by BBDO New York for Sandy Hook Promise
    • “English for Beginners” by Bardzo (Poland) for Allegro.pl
  • Press: “Newspaper Stack – Trump” for Der Taggespiegel by Scholz & Friends (Germany) 
  • Outdoor: “Fearless Girl” for State Street Global Advisors by McCann New York

Summing up the awards, Epica jury president Spencer Baim, chief strategic officer of Vice Media, said:

This year more than ever, brands have a responsibility to put a positive message out into the world. Our winners do that, while also representing the best of branding, messaging, storytelling and smart design.

The Digital Grand Prix was won by BETC (France) for its much lauded “Like My Addiction” campaign, featuring a fake Instagram influencer who turns out to be an alcoholic.

Stéphane Xiberras, Executive Creative Officer  BETC Paris, said:

It is a great honor to win the Digital Epica Grand Prix this year and a great recognition of our work. It is particularly significant for us since the Like my addiction campaign partly owes its success to its massive international press coverage, which made it possible to turn this Instagram page into a global campaign, and most importantly, to raise awareness about the danger of addiction on a worldwide scale.

Scholz & Friends from Germany won the Press Grand Prix with a simple yet powerful image that builds stacked newspapers into a visual pun featuring a bullying Donald Trump.

Matthias Spaetgens, chief creative officer of Scholz & Friends, said:

Winning a Grand Prix for our campaign for the newspaper Der Tagesspiegel makes us feel extremely happy, especially when the creative work is not judged by the creative industry itself but by critical journalists. 

The Outdoor Grand Prix went to McCann New York for the widely celebrated “Fearless Girl”, who faces down the famous bull on Wall Street in what began as a symbol of female leadership for State Street Global Advisors and turned into an icon that captures a turning point in history.

Rob Reilly, global creative chairman from McCann Worldgroup said:

The Fearless Girl became a media sensation in a way we never anticipated, in a very organic way. What made it so powerful was the amount of support we received from people who recognized the importance of what she stands for and kept driving the conversation forward, during a time when people are striving to reshape existing norms to better reflect their moral values. 

The Design Grand Prix went to KBS Canada for its “living” logo for Innocence Canada, an organisation fighting to free wrongly convicted prisoners.

KBS chief creative officer Matt Hassell said:

We knew immediately that this design work needed to acknowledge the past exonerees, the current staff and donors. The logo itself was created to reclaim the typical prison tally marks to express both a human touch and progress towards overturning wrongful conviction. In this way, it serves as a measurement of success and a reminder that much work is still to be done. 

There were two Film Grand Prix this year as the jury wanted to award both a stunning public interest film and a superbly crafted commercial.

“Evan” by BBDO New York cunningly misdirects the viewer to watch an unfolding school romance while a shooting is being prepared, unnoticed, in the background, while “English for Beginners” by Poland’s Bardzo is a warm, witty and beautiful spot for Allegro.pl about an older man who painstakingly learns English so that he can communicate with his new grand-daughter when he visits London.

Bardzo’s founder, owner and creative director Hubert Stadnicki said:

As Epica is the only festival with a jury of marketing journalists, we can be sure our campaign was judged by people with a thorough, up to date and possibly the widest knowledge of the marketing world.

He added that the campaign was by no means created to win awards. “It was made for our client to a specific brief. It met all the marketing objectives and before being entered for festivals had been loved by millions of viewers around the world.”

This year Epica received 3350 entries from 71 countries, down on the previous year due to the Publicis awards hiatus and a lower participation by WPP agencies. There were twice as many entries from China and Taiwan, 50% more from Malaysia and three times as many from Poland. New countries this year included Pakistan and Kenya. 

US was top in the country rankings with 63 awards including 10 golds, followed by France and the UK.  

Founded 31 years ago, Epica is the only worldwide creative award judged by journalists from the marketing, design and advertising press, as well as specialist reporters in fields ranging fromproduction to VR and luxury branding.