Cannes Lions

Bring Back Lockdown

OGILVY, New York / CHANGE THE REF / 2022

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Overview

Background

Among wealthier, developed countries, the USA is an outlier when it comes to firearm violence. US governments have allowed gun violence to become a human rights crisis. Wide access to firearms and loose regulations lead to more than 39,000 men, women and children being killed with guns each year in the USA.

But for the first time in decades, school shootings stats have decreased. The problem is, it was only due to the COVID-19 lockdown. It’s shocking to think that we needed a global pandemic to reduce America’s gun violence epidemic. So how can we spark conversation around the gun safety issue during Covid lockdown? To provoke people and make them realize how absurd this is, we launched a campaign suggesting that people should go back to lockdown.

Idea

To bring attention to the gun violence issue and call for stricter gun control measures, we created a deliberately provocative rallying cry: 'Bring Back Lockdown.'

A film inspired by a new social behavior produced by the Covid pandemic: the lockdown. The film misdirects the audience by adopting the visual of Covid-related commercials — shots of empty streets and places — and a powerful voice-over with common arguments involving Covid concerns to emphasize that similar dangers exist with rampant gun violence.

Strategy

After a tough year of lockdown, America was ready to come back to normal life. So as the world and schools were about to reopen, we wanted to talk to the parents of the 76 million kids that were going back to school and the dangers that would come with them coming back. So shooting survivors (from the Parkland shooting) made their voices heard – by demanding action and security.

Execution

The film misdirects the audience by adopting the visual of Covid-related commercials — shots of empty streets and places — and a powerful voice-over in which every word and sentence on crafted to simulate common arguments involving Covid concerns to emphasize that similar dangers exist with rampant gun violence.

Outcome

The campaign objective was to spark conversation about gun safety and school shootings as the world was about to reopen after the Covid lockdown.

And we achieve just that with Change the Ref founders being called to talk about the issue on major media outlets like CNN, Forbes, and many others worldwide.

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2023, CHANGE THE REF

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