Roger Hatchuel, chairman and seigneur of the company behind the Cannes International Advertising Festival, has lifted his threat to ban judges from German agencies at the 2003 event, seemingly mollified by promises that the exclusion from Germany’s Creative Index of his other nice little earner – the Eurobest advertising awards – will be “re-evaluated”.
Eurobest was recently excised from the Index which lists those creative awards soirées deemed worth entering by a coalition of eighteen German agencies. It aims to level the playing field and contain the costs of entering the proliferation of worldwide creative contests.
But, insists Saatchi & Saatchi (Frankfurt) executive creative director Carsten Heintzsch, a spokesman for the German shops: “We won't rethink the basic [Index precept], which is to save money on awards shows.” But the coalition will now consider sending a few entries to Eurobest, “so they don't feel excluded”.
Remaining in diplomatic mode, the Eighteen have also agreed to withdraw last month’s letter of complaint to Hatchuel, accusing him of rigging the Cannes jury selection procedure “for the commercial purposes” of his familial fiefdom.
Heintzsch declared his happiness that the tiff with Hatchuel had ended with a volley of air kisses. “It [Cannes] is like Christmas for creative people worldwide. It was like your father saying you can't come to Christmas. As difficult as [Hatchuel] is sometimes, his [event] is worth a lot for all of us.”
Neither Hatchuel – a world-class grouch who brought this year’s festival to a jovial close by publicly describing the world’s advertising trade press as “smiling cobras and crocodiles” – nor his Cannes mint were willing to comment.
Data sourced from: AdWeek.com; additional content by WARC staff