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Cannes Lions Honours Legendary Commercial Director Joe Pytka with the Lion of St. Mark

(May 13, 2014)




LONDON, May 13, 2014 - (ACN Newswire) - The organisers of the 61st Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, are proud to announce that the prestigious Lion of St. Mark award will this year be presented to director Joe Pytka in honour and celebration of his long and outstanding contribution to creativity in the advertising and communications industry.



"Director of some of the best and most well-known TV commercials, Joe Pytka's prolific and accomplished work has had an enormous influence on TV advertising," says Terry Savage, Chairman of Lions Festivals. "Producing numerous award winning ads for many global brands, his creations have inspired and awed peers and audiences alike. It is with great honour and respect that we present Joe with the Lion of St. Mark for his outstanding contribution to the industry."

Joe Pytka, Director of PYTKA, began his career working evenings at WRS Motion Pictures before running a post production department for MGM Telestudios, after which he created a number of documentaries and dramatic films for WQED. His first production company with partner Rift Fournier specialised in creating independent documentaries and occasional commercials. Disenchanted with the lack of formality of the pure documentary form, Pykta's attention turned more to commercials. At the same time he experimented with early music video format in his documentary 'Maggie's Farm' and 'High Flying Bird' a short film with Steve McQueen.

Pytka's commercial career began to flourish leading him to work with legendary McCabe and Riney to produce award winning work, and after breaking with Fournier, form an association with Rick Levine before going out on his own.

His work with Riney included commercials for Blitz Weinhard Brewery, Gallo Winery's Bartles and Jaymes Wine Coolers and Perrier. At this time Pytka began working with Phil Dusenberry, producing award winning ads for Pepsi, General Electric, DuPont and FedEx. His work with Wieden + Kennedy for Nike has been called ground-breaking and he's been called 'a genius' for his IBM work with Steve Hayden. Pytka, the man behind many famous Super Bowl ads, has also become known for his work with celebrities including Madonna, Michael Jordan, Tom Hanks, Tiger Woods, Marlon Brando and President Obama to name a few. He's also made two films and created videos for The Beatles, John Lennon and Michael Jackson.

As well as multiple Lions, Pytka has been awarded with two Cannes Lions Film Grand Prix - 'Archaeology' for Pepsi-Cola Company in 1985 and 'Bill Heater' for John Hancock Financial Services in 1986; seven Palme d'Or awards - 1979, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1993, 1994, 1995; and two Cannes 50th anniversary honorary Lions for best directing and best production.


Commenting on the award, Joe Pytka, Director of PYTKA says, "Cannes Lions has always been the benchmark by which great work is measured and has been the centre of my professional life. Vive Cannes Lions!"

Joe Pytka will be presented with the Lion of St. Mark in Cannes, France, on Saturday 21 June. Previous recipients of the accolade are Lee Clow (2013), Dan Wieden (2012) and Sir John Hegarty (2011). The Lion of St. Mark trophy is based upon the original Lions awarded at the Festival which were modelled on the lion statue in St. Mark's Square in Venice, location of the first Festival in 1954 and alternating host city with Cannes before Cannes became the Festival's permanent home in 1984.

To register to attend the 61st Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, the world's largest and most prestigious global annual awards celebrating creative excellence in advertising and communications, please visit www.canneslions.com.

About Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity

The International Festival of Creativity, also known as Cannes Lions, is the world's leading celebration of creativity in communications. Founded in 1954, the Festival takes place every June in Cannes, France.

As the most prestigious international annual advertising and communications awards, over 35,500 entries from all over the world are showcased and judged at the Festival. Winning companies receive the highly coveted Lion trophy, a global benchmark of creative excellence, for Film, Print, Outdoor, Interactive, Radio, Design, Product Design, Promo & Activation, Film Craft, Mobile, Branded Entertainment and Integrated advertising, as well as the best Media, Direct, PR, Titanium, Creative Effectiveness and Innovation ideas. The Festival is also the only truly global meeting place for advertisers, advertising and communication professionals. More than 12,000 delegates from 95 countries attend a week-long programme of exhibitions, screenings and talks by worldwide thought leaders. As the networking and learning opportunity of the year, Cannes Lions is the must-attend event for anyone involved in brand communications. For further information, please visit www.canneslions.com.

About Lions Festivals

Lions Festivals is the organiser of Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity and Eurobest as well as co-organisers, with its joint venture partners, of Dubai Lynx International Festival of Creativity, Spikes Asia Festival of Creativity, Festival of Asian Marketing Effectiveness, and the Digital Asia Festival. www.lionsfestivals.com. Lions Festivals is powered by Top Right Group.

Source: Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity

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