Cannes Lions 2020 cancelled as organisers hold back festival and awards until 2021


By Shawn Lim | Reporter, Asia Pacific

April 3, 2020 | 3 min read

The organisers of Cannes Lions have announced the annual International Festival of Creativity will not take place this year and will instead return in 2021.

The festival was initially postponed to October from its regular slot in June amid the growing spread of coronavirus and subsequent cancellation of many other global events.

Now, festival owner Ascential has confirmed that the next edition of Cannes Lions will skip a year, with plans now set in stone to move to 21 to 25 June 2021.


The organisers have decided the next edition of the festival will not be held in 2020

Philip Thomas, chairman of Cannes Lions said the “difficult decision” followed in-depth consultations with the event's partners and customers and reflected the unprecedented societal, health and economic challenges currently facing the world. He added that organisers also wanted to remove any uncertainty about the running of associated awards and events for its partners and customers.

“Cannes Lions at its core has always been about creativity and the Lions. We realise that the creative community has other challenges to face, and simply isn’t in a position to put forward the work that will set the benchmark,” explained Thomas.

The latest marketing news and insights straight to your inbox.

Get the best of The Drum by choosing from a series of great email briefings, whether that’s daily news, weekly recaps or deep dives into media or creativity.

Sign up

“The marketing and creative industries, in common with so many others, are currently in turmoil, and it’s clear that we can play our small part by removing all speculation about the festival this year.

"We have tried to make our decisions as early as possible to give the industry total clarity on the situation, and that is why we are announcing this move today.”

Aside from Cannes Lions, the coronavirus has also affected major marketing conferences and events in APAC, US and Europe.


More from Advertising

View all


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +