National CineMedia, the U.S. Representative for the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, has names The Creative Ladder, a nonprofit dedicated to making creative careers more accessible and inclusive for young people, as the official charity partner for the 2023 Young Lions Competition.
The Creative Ladder is featured in the 2023 U.S. Young Lions brief, with competitions open to young professionals aged 30 and under in the following categories: film, digital, media, PR, and print. The winning teams will represent the country as Team USA at the live global competitions during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity held in Cannes, France from June 19-23.
The Creative Ladder co-founder Ryan Reynolds said, “It's hard to imagine anything more valuable and energizing for a relatively new nonprofit like The Creative Ladder than having hundreds of America's most creative minds brainstorming ideas to spread the word about what we're building. I cannot wait to see the ideas the Young Lions competitors come up with. It's so rewarding to know that today's rising creatives will be helping us reach and inspire the next generation of talent. What an incredible example of lifting as you climb.”
Entrants in the Young Lions Competition will create an advertisement or communications strategy that can be implemented by The Creative Ladder. Participants will be tasked with helping the nonprofit address the awareness gap surrounding creative careers.
According to an industry survey by The Creative Ladder, 75 percent of creative professionals—and 78 percent of nonwhite creative professionals—say they didn’t know their current careers existed when they graduated high school. That lack of awareness can delay the launch of a career by years, and it especially hurts those who come from backgrounds that haven’t been well represented in creative industries, such as people of color, immigrants, disabled people, and those from low-income households.
“We're thrilled at the opportunity to have the incredibly talented Young Lions entrants develop ways to represent and share the impact we're making,” said Dionna Dorsey Calloway, co-founder and CEO, The Creative Ladder. “Knowing we're able to participate in providing fresh talent with the chance to creatively challenge themselves and be globally celebrated, while directly supporting our nonprofit's mission to connect, inspire, and elevate an inclusive new generation of creative industry leaders, is beyond exciting."
NCM will be donating in-cinema national media to support Represent! across its network of theaters – AMC, Regal, Cinemark, Harkins, and more than fifty additional affiliates. In addition, for the first time, NCM is partnering with FCB New York to co-produce creative content with Noovie Studios, NCM’s in-house creative group.
“FCB is thrilled to partner with NCM and Cannes Lions. Together we hope to create a story that is compelling, informative, and inspiring, not just to this year’s participants, but to future Young Lions as well,” said Michael Aimette, co-chief creative officer, FCB New York. “We’re really looking forward to rolling up our sleeves and bringing it to NCM’s Noovie pre-show on the big screen,”
The 60-90 second spot will air in movie theaters across the country in June. The spot serves to make Young Lions participants famous on the big screen, promoting and celebrating all their efforts in advance of Team USA’s journey to Cannes, France for the global Young Lions Competition.
“NCM is more than just a media partner for cinema advertising, we are a creative media company,” said Amy Tunick, chief marketing officer, National CineMedia. “We love the opportunity to feature the Young Lions winners on NCM’s big screens. They are the newest creatives working at the intersection of storytelling and advertising, and this is exactly whom we want to champion.”
The sponsors of the Young Lions Competition include Pereira O’Dell (film), Digitas (digital), UM (media), Weber Shandwick (PR), and NCM (print).
For more information about the Cannes Lions Young Lions Competition, go to https://canneslions.ncm.com/young-lions