The 7th annual MENA Cristal Festival, a media and communications summit held from February 21-23 in Mzaar, Lebanon, awarded two Tunisian agencies – JWT Tunisia and Havas Tunisia – the Cristal Sapphire and Cristal Emerald prize, for placing second and third in the competition respectively.
Havas Tunisia won second place in the outdoor advertising category for their piece, entitled “Catch Me If You Can,” which they shot for Protek. JWT Tunisia won two third place prizes: in the radio advertising category for a campaign entitled “Optimism,” a spot for Tunisiana, and in the viral film category for a short film entitled “Pulp Fiction,” an advertisement for ARFT.
“Receiving this prize is more of a commencement than a recognition, especially considering the small budget we had. We managed to find a humorous angle regarding the uncertain security conditions following the revolution for the Protek commercial – a camera surveillance company,” declared Haithem Derbel, copywriter at Havas and member the creative team behind the “Catch Me If You Can” piece along with Nizar Maalej.
JWT was shortlisted in the film category for their short film “Titanic,” shot for the annual meeting of Tunisian filmmakers, ARFT. Havas was correspondingly shortlisted in the film category for their contribution to Tunisie Telecom’s 3G + + campaign.
“Our goal is to get a prize at the Dubai Lynx festival or at Cannes Festival. Winning in this competition is a good sign for our agency, which is only about a year and a half old. There is a whole team working behind each campaign. We are mainly young Tunisians and getting a reward motivates us to do more,” said Derbel.
Ahmed Zoughlemi, copywriter at JWT, explained that their ultimate goal would be to show what they are capable of as an agency, and to achieve this, he asserted, they have to continue making campaigns while taking into consideration the interests of a wider audience – not just the Tunisian public.
“I think that that awareness has enabled us to win at the MENA Cristal Festival. Tunisia has many talented creative teams and now we have to prove it,” Zoughlemi stated.
“It is quite hard to win a prize at a competition, so winning two is definitely rewarding…We have been managing accounts in different sectors now we want to acquire the credibility and recognition that will take us to the next level so we might attract international interest,” asserted Zoughlemi.
The Mena Cristal Festival, created in 2005, is an event held annually rewarding the best advertising creations of the year in the MENA region – Middle East North Africa. The jury is composed of different international agencies and advertisers.