Runners up

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Saatchi/L.A's Toyota effort won Gold at Cannes and was on the top spots list in Creativity's Awards Report. It seems easy, but the expert direction of Baker Smith just makes it look that way.

Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi /Los Angeles Chief Creative Officer: Steve Rabosky Creative Director: Harvey Marco Copywriter: Travis Sorge Art Director: Dino Spadavecchia Agency Producer: Elissa Singstock Production Company: Harvest, Santa Monica Director: Baker Smith Director of Photography: Adam Kimmel Editorial Company: Lost Planet Editor: Paul Martinez Visual Effects: Method, Santa Monica Music: Tim Mosher, Stoker Audio Post Production: RavensWork , Venice


An impressive effort out of the gate from David Droga's new Publicis/New York regime, the TBS rebranding campaign gives the nondescript channel some new ID and gives us all the pleasure of some of the slickest spots of the year, all of which live up to the station's expectation-elevating new tagline, " Very Funny." The writers and always-on director Jim Jenkins deliver a veritable lush garden of earthly comedic delights via the futuristic call center devoted entirely to evaluating the comedic value of mildly absurd daily incidents. In "Wings," a pair of idling waiters seek help assessing a scenario involving a company jerk (who looks uncannily like a young George Bush) manhandling the sensibilities of some Japanese clients while sporting trousers soiled by contact with a saucy Buffalo wing. Great pacing, great casting and performances, nice bonus touches (the waiter sidekick interpreting the Rorschach wing stain as a ladle).

Agency: Publicis/New York Worldwide Creative Director: David Droga Creative Directors: Howard Willmott, Duncan Marshall Copywriter: Eric Quennoy Art Director: Jason Levine Agency Producer: Colin Pearsall Production Company: Hungry Man/N.Y. Director: Jim Jenkins Director of Photography: Ramsey Nickell Executive Producer: Stephen Orent Editorial Company: MacKenzie Cutler Editor: Gavin Cutler Visual Effects: The Mill/N.Y. Sound Design: Marshall Grupp Audio Post Production: Sound Lounge, New York

Volvo:"Video Game"

There were bigger, flashier spots this year, certainly. And we are always eager to recognize the raw power of executional brilliance. But this spot, while oodles of fun to watch, was backed by a great idea, having been produced by genuine gaming gurus (see Creativity, April 2004). "Video Game" and its sibling "Music Video" from director Dave Meyers, felt fresh and relevant for Volvo, delivering all the performance and sheet metal action, but with a memorable, contemporary twist. Plus, the spots were done out of EURO RSCG MVBMS under a creative director who has since moved on (Kevin Roddy) and a freelance writer who has since started his own agency (Ernest Lupinacci), so the campaign has the feel of a collectors item.

Agency: Euro RSCG MVBMS Partners/N.Y. Executive Creative Director: Kevin Roddy Copywriter: Ernest Lupinacci Agency Executive Producer: Mark Sitley Agency Producer: Dan Fried Production Company: Valkyrie Entertainment Directors: Joakim Wejdemar, Luke Anderson Editorial Company: Mad Mad Judy, New York Editor: Steve Hamilton Sound Design: Mad Mad Judy Sound Designer: Steve Hamilton Graphic Animation Company: Berwyn Editorial Graphic Design: Mark Chew Graphic Animation: Riccardo Sinti

HP: "Francois"

Even after a year, we apparently haven't had our fill of cool, watchable HP ads. This Nth execution in the legendary "+" campaign furthers the picture taking cause started last year with "You" which introduced the frozen frame antics of director Francois Vogel. The inventive director is up to his tricks again here, going so far as to star in the spot, capturing his own mug over and over in a repeated act of auto photography. The effects are gee whiz magnetic, but the spot is really driven by a simple, almost old school charm that transcends the visual trickery.

Agency: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners/ San Francisco Creative Directors: Rich Silverstein John Norman CD/Copywriter: Steve Simpson Agency Executive Producer: Josh Reynolds Production Company: Paranoid Projects @ Tool Director: Francois Vogel Director of Photography: Adam Kimmel Executive Producers: Jennifer Siegel, Claude Letessier Producer: Mark Fetterman Editorial Company: Chrome/Santa Monica Editor: Hal Honigsberg VFX: Zoic Studios VFX Producer: Carla Attanasio Music Supervision: Agoraphone Final Mix: LIME Studios Motion Design & Graphic Company: Prologue

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