Cannes Lions has today announced that its annual Festival of Creativity and awards has been cancelled for 2020 and will no longer take place in October as planned.
The festival, which was originally due to take place in June, was postponed two weeks ago to later this year due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has millions worldwide practicing social isolation, caused thousands of deaths, and provoked severe economic disruption.
However, Cannes Lions said with the crisis also being felt by the marketing, creative and media industries, it had now “become clear” that its customers’ priorities had “shifted”.
“Our difficult decision follows in-depth consultations with our partners and customers and reflects the unprecedented societal, health and economic challenges currently facing the world, as well as our desire to remove any uncertainty about the running of the awards and event for our partners and customers,” the festival said.
Commenting on the news, Philip Thomas, chairman at Cannes Lions, said: “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.”
Managing director Simon Cook added: “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.”
The next edition of the festival will take place on June 21-25 next year.