Last year, French addiction charity Addict Aide won 72 awards, including a D&AD pencil and multiple Cannes Lions for its Louise Delage campaign, in which it created a fake Instagram account depicting a fun-loving girl, but with all the signs of alcohol addiction.
The charity, and agency BETC Paris, have now followed this up with a second stunt, this time involving an Escape Room concept and based on a real-life alcoholic's experiences. It invited over 7000 people over the course of a month to visit an apartment, and try to guess the "secret" of its inhabitant, Laurence, in order to break out.
The apartment is filled with "clues" such as carpet stains, half-empty perfume bottles, broken mirrors and out of date food in the fridge, and the players come up with various theories -- that Laurence is a vampire, murderess, a KGB agent -- but not one of them seems to guess that she's an alcoholic. Eventually, they are shown a video of the real-life Laurence explaining that this is a reconstruction of her apartment during the years when she was drinking too much.
Like Louise Delage, the campaign aims to tackle the taboo of alcohol addiction in French women. The stunt and its website direct viewers to the charity's portal, Addictaide.fr. Amine Benyamina, an addiction psychiatrist and one of the developers of the portal, says in a statement: "The secret of Laurence is also the daily reality of millions of women just like her, struggling each day with the pressing need to drink, imposed on them by their disease and the pressing need to keep up appearances, imposed on them by society."