FRENCH-LANGUAGE AD FESTIVAL RESURRECTED

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MONTREAL -- The Mondial de la publicite francophone, the contest honoring the best in French-language advertising worldwide that was declared dead last November after 15 years of existence, has risen from the ashes. The competition will be resurrected this fall, under new direction, format and focus.

The competition had died mainly due to a lack of financing and drastically reduced interest and attendance by foreign advertising people. But its rebirth is largely because of the efforts of Vincent Malone, a creative director with Omnicom Group's DDB Worldwide in Paris; Vladimir Donn, a journalist in Paris; and the Association des Agences Conseils en Communication, represented by Francoise Assere.

While revamped rules and deadlines are still being finalized, a decision has been made to hold the judging of this year's entries in Paris in September, with the awards to be presented in October in Yaounde, Cameroon. The accent will now be placed on the creative of each country with the old Prix des Nations as the center of the contest.

And whereas the Mondial began in Canada, was managed in Canada and was held in Canada every second time, it will now be managed from Europe and is likely to be held in Canada only occasionally. France, Switzerland, Belgium, Morocco, Libya and the Ivory Coast, along with Canada, have been the main participants.

"I'm happy that it's not dead, and that it's more open to the creative process," said Patrick Beauduin, former Mondial president and the creative director of Blitz promo.direct.data, Montreal (part of Cossette Communications Group). "There was a need to revisit it with its goals. The evolution seems to be on the right track. We're now waiting for the new rules."

Mr. Beauduin will continue to represent Canada for the Mondial management, which will now be handled in Paris. -- Gail Chiasson

Copyright April 2001, Crain Communications Inc.

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