1 month ago
This week’s Bestadsontv.com guest judge is Mihai Gongu, Executive Creative Director at Cheil Romania.
“I’m not interested in your stories about the past or any crap of that kind because the woods are burning, boys, you understand? There’s a big blaze going on all around.” These are not just the words of Willy Loman in Arthur Miller’s famous play, but the thoughts of hundreds of millions of our consumers today, as in right this very instant.
When populist politicians are setting the world ablaze, a simple question arises: what should brands do with their sophisticated means of influencing perception and behavior? Influence people’s perception and behavior in relation to flavors of canned soup? Or sun lotion? What would that ever achieve, when the woods are burning?
We are not in the business of selling products. We are in the business of growing brands. And brands, as you know, are supposed to be like people. They’re supposed to care about other people. They’re supposed to care about what is going on with the world. So, yes, people need brands to act in lieu of the failed governments, educational systems, and churches of the world. It’s not just their duty, it is their business.
It is Gillette’s business to fight toxic masculinity, it is Nike’s business to empower the black community, it is Essity’s business to make the world acknowledge menstruation is bloody normal, it is Volvo’s business to make roads safer, and it is Budweiser’s business to make sure people have drinking water. And kudos to them for actually acting upon it.
I am privileged white male judging creative work when the woods are burning. You’ll have to excuse me, but praising work that is actually giving a helping hand in putting down some of the fire, for the reasons mentioned above, is the least I can do.
Best Film: Diesel 'Francesca'. Probably the best film Diesel made since "How To Teach Scouting Skills", painted in modern chiaroscuro by the ridiculously talented Francois Rousselet.
Tied for Best Film: Black Lives Matter 'Join the movement, not the moment'. An insight so powerful it punches one right in the stomach and into action.
Runner-up: Black Lives Matter 'Mama'. Absolutely chilling editing. This should run in every police station nationwide.
Best Print: PETA 'Now you know how it feels'. Now we all know how it feels, indeed.
Runner-up: Natulab 'Hamburger'. Make taglines great again: stop using MAGA references. This one would have worked fine without a line.
Best Outdoor: WWF New Zealand 'Lockdown lasts a lifetime'. We are living in the age of VR and we're still keeping animals in captivity for our viewing pleasure. How sick is that?
Runner-up: Canon '#FirstHugs'. I like the simplicity, but I believe that if it were a bit uglier, it would have been more beautiful.
Best Interactive: Greenpeace 'The Background Of The Problem'. I've seen other brands use this new digital media space over the past months, it's the first time I see it put to more than a commercial use.
Runner-up: Interval House 'The Way To Leave'. A fresh solution to one of the toughest briefs to crack out there. Love the influencer lingo.
This week's guest judge is Mihai Gongu, executive creative director at Cheil Romania.
True to his surname, Mihai won over 150 gongs in his 17 years career spanning three countries and two continents.
Before his current regional creative lead role for Cheil SEE, he has helped TOMORROW Shanghai win two back-to-back titles of Greater China Boutique Agency of the Year from Campaign. Prior to that, he has led GMP/Jung von Matt Bucharest to two titles of CEE Independent Agency of the Year at Golden Drum.
He has also been a part of the Jung von Matt team in Berlin and helped the agency secure its Global Independent Agency of the Year title at New York Festivals, Cannes Lions, D&AD, and Lovie Awards 2018, respectively, with work for BMW, MINI, Reporters Without Borders, and OhYouWomen.
Mihai has also led creative departments in top network agencies the likes of BBDO which he helped secure the ADC Agency of the Year in 2009 and Effie Agency of the Year in 2012.
He has served as a jury member on various shows the likes of Effie, Eurobest, ADC Europe, New York Festivals, Busan AdStars, Intercontinental Cup, AutoVision Awards, KIAF, Webby's and was a jury president at WINA in South America and Golden Drum in the CEE.
He has also been teaching Integrated Advertising at the Cannes Lions Academy in Bucharest and Miami Ad School Berlin and led his students to a D&AD New Blood Pencil in 2019.