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Cannes Lions 2011: Ogilvy’s ‘Train’ leaves with Gold in Film Craft

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Cannes Lions 2011: Ogilvy’s ‘Train’ leaves with Gold in Film Craft

Ogilvy India has ended the Festival on a high, cornering a Gold Lion for it entry titled ‘Train’, which was done for the Ministry of Railways, Government of India. The spot, for its use of music, was surprising and moved up quite easily at the time of judging, according to Keith Rose, Director, Velocity Films, who was the Jury President for the Film Craft category.

While the entrant company for this piece of work was Ogilvy India, its production partner on the work was Nirvana Films. The win is a special one for Ogilvy India’s Executive Chairman and Creative Director, Ogilvy South Asia, Piyush Pandey.

As the Human Train makes way...
In a candid chat with exchange4media, Piyush Pandey recalled, “We had only two weeks to create this ad. The Chairman of the Railway Board briefed me, and after that, the next 14 days I was working on this like a 20-year old trainee, literally running on the roads! A whole lot of credit goes to Nirvana Films and Prakash Varma (Co-Founder, Nirvana Films), who put their hearts out in this film.”

The film has used Ashok Kumar-starrer song ‘Rail Gaadi, Rail Gaadi’ from 1968’s movie ‘Aashirwaad’ as its background score. It shows a human train making its way through the roads of India – the music picking pace and adding more life to the film as it progresses. The film ends with the voiceover ‘The Magic of India, Indian Railways’. Piyush Pandey informed, “To recreate the music like this was Prakash’s idea and it has done wonders. There was a not a single instrument that has been used in this. It was a human train, and the ‘music’ captured that.”

This is the second year when Film Craft has been separated from the Film Lions category to form a standalone award category. And the common feedback on the work was the lack of thought in categories chosen. Corcoise Films’ Prasoon Pandey, who was in the jury, told exchange4media that even as India’s work in general was good, Indian companies needed to “enter cleverly”. He said, “They are not spending enough time understanding the category. There were examples where fantastic sound design was entered into best use of music subcategory. Agencies shouldn’t rush and should explain the context of the entry.”

The Subtle Afterhours
If Nike and Reebok made their way during the game, Puma cleverly worked to own the after hours’ space. Droga5’s work for Puma Social, entry titled ‘Afterhours Athletes’, was awarded the Grand Prix for the Film Craft category. According to Keith Rose, it was a hands down win. He said, “There were other contenders, but all aspects of this film was perfect. The sum its parts -- the art direction, the modern day contemporary form, the emotions and its impact and emotions -– made this a clear winner.”

Prasoon Pandey explained more, “We chose Afterhours as the Grand Prix because of the subtle manner in which it can suck you into the time and zone it is trying to represent. It is lit in such a non-lit way. The editing, lighting, camera, casting, music, all come together to transport you in a world where you almost feel like you spent the night out.”


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