The CLIOs dazzled a captivated audience of industry heavyweights at the American Museum of Natural History last week. A high energy animated motion graphic and commercial montage from Phoenix kicked off the 2012 award ceremony. This sequence, just one of a handful of videos and graphics created for the look of the event, was part of a comprehensive campaign from Phoenix Media Group that injected new energy into the industry's premier award show.
"We wanted to make the CLIOs bold," stated Phoenix Founder/EP Chris Phoenix. "The awards amount to what is essentially the most important evening of the year for the advertising world, and we wanted a formidable visual aesthetic that matches those of the Grammys and the Academy Awards."
"The CLIO Awards are better than ever and each year proving that it is the Oscars of Advertising; this has much to do with our vendor Phoenix Productions," added CLIO Executive Director Nicole Purcell. "This has been the second year that they planned and executed every aspect of production for the awards ceremony, including script writing. They continue to surpass our expectations and provide a memorable experience for our guests and we look forward to putting on another spectacular show next year."
Phoenix followed their highly regarded CCTV campaign with the CLIO Awards Show Open which was a rapid-fire cross section of grand, gold, silver and bronze CLIO winners, seamlessly weaving dozens of spots into a propulsive visual narrative. With a bit of clever editing, characters from one commercial appear to chase after, cheer for, and do battle against characters in other commercials-a trick that serves to emphasize the common threads running through the year's entrants while highlighting their diversity.
"The show open needed to set the tone for the entire ceremony," noted Producer Colin Elliott. "I think for this audience, it can be fun to see their work juxtaposed with other pieces. To get them to laugh, to jolt and energize, and to tease them with playful, entertaining and compelling images is what should kick off a great celebration."
A dozen visually stimulating CG slates and loops, which played on the stage and LED columns as backdrop throughout the show, complemented the open. Glass shards flock through a dynamic backdrop of space and light, coalescing into the bold, metallic lettering of the CLIO logo.
"The creative was based around getting a really close view of the CLIO logo itself," noted Senior Art Director Jeff Man. "The reflective shards came out of this creative process and then took on their own meaning, which is that the CLIO Awards is a showcase of great work, a summation and reflection of the finest parts of the advertising industry. The lettering is reflective and dramatic to reference the awards themselves while also asserting an elegant strength."
Despite working with Joan Rivers who hosted the awards and other top talent receiving honors, photographer Annie Leibovitz and author/chef Anthony Bourdain among them, it was the wider audience in attendance, over 900 people—a sharp increase from about 500 attendees at last year's CLIOs—that Phoenix was most eager to engage. "When you're in front of one of the most critical and creative groups of people on the planet, you have to do everything in your power to get their attention and entertain them," stated Phoenix. "It's difficult to impress these people. If we can pique their curiosity or make them think 'That was interesting' then we've done our job."
Client: Prometheus Global Media (CLIO)Agency: Phoenix Media Group Sr. Art Director: Jeff ManScript Writer, Copywriter: Jordan BurchetteProd Company: Phoenix ProductionsEP: Chris PhoenixProduction Coordinator: Adam RauscherEditors: Morgan Faust, Colin ElliottProducer: Colin ElliottColorist: Colin TraversDesigners/Animators: Jeff Man, Yung Jae Suh, Gavin ShapiroSound Designer: Chris PhoenixAudio Mix: Mark Passy