Director Frank Budgen Racks Up Four Gold Lions

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CANNES ( -- Judging by this year's Film Lions, we may be living in a
Photo: Laurel Wentz
A U.K. company took the Palme D'Or for the first time in 10 years at the Palais tonight.
Golden Age of British commercials direction.

From Spectre's Daniel Kleinman –- a bridesmaid again this year, narrowly missing the Grand Prix with "Champagne" after coming just as close last year with "Bear" for John West Salmon –- to Frank Budgen, who directed a quarter of this year's Gold Lion winners, U.K. shooters were dominant.

First in 10 years
While the U.S. won more Lions in all, U.K. agencies won almost twice as many Golds. And two of America's big winners -- the Grand Prix-winning "Tag" and Gold Lion-winning "Shade Running," both for Nike from Weiden & Kennedy -- were directed by Britain's Mr. Budgen, whose four Gold Lions led London's Gorgeous Enterprises to this year's Palme D'Or for best production company, an honor that hasn't gone to a U.K.-based company in more than a decade.

As jury president Jeff Goodby observed, it was wit, not broad comedy as in years past, that commanded the jury's attention this year. Will this have an effect on future U.S. work, moving it in a more subtle –- dare we say, more English -- direction?

End of 'oddball mockumentaries'?
"The American oddball mockumentary feel might be waning," said Mr. Goodby, co-chairman of Omnicom Group's Goodby, Silverstein & Partners and himself a master of the genre. "It was fun while it lasted. We all got a ton of metal out of it. I'm definitely going to go back with an eye toward more expansive, visually striking spots." ~ ~ ~
Jim Hanas is the editor of The Creativity E-Mail and the soon to be relaunched

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