Cannes Lions

THE LIONS

LES EAUX MINÉRALES D'OULMÈS, Casablanca / LES EAUX MINERALES D'OULMES / 2013

Case Film

Overview

Entries

Credits

Overview

Description

In Morocco, the Atlas Lion has prevailed in the mountains of the Atlas region where he lived in the wild, for a long time. Although endangered, it does remain some thirty specimens in the zoos of the country and the lions’ evocative power is still alive. Indeed, for Moroccans, the Atlas Lion is a symbol of courage, greatness, majesty, and strength.

Always present in the minds and in the collective unconscious through legends ans tales, the Atlas lion also acts as a patriotic symbol by lending its name to the national soccer team and by showing in the country’s coat of arms. Reviving the myth of the Atlas lion was the real challenge of the ad commercial creative idea.

The movie opens with a shot of a landway in the middle of nature. The mountains’ beauty melts into the vastness of lands. Only a cloud of dust in the trail of a 4x4 driving at a fast pace disrupts the majesty of the place. A man behind the wheel ventures into these lands. The cross-country vehicle climbs a hillock, pursues its path and stops near a plain… The driver comes out to open the trunk doors, from which two lions leap out towards the fearless man who looks serene. The man lets his big cats wander leisurely, following them to their beloved water spot. Their passionate game goes on, from strolls to embraces, favoring pure emotion. Afterwards, the man takes a well deserved sip of water…the scene ends with an image of them, at the foot of a rock, behind which takes shape the Atlas embracing the stretch of the land.

Relating the legend of the Atlas Lion that incarnates the raw power is the main idea of our creative theme. The message is about 'the strength’s natural protection' by the water Ain Atlas, which is illustrated in the symbiotic and harmonious relationship, of the man with his lions.

Execution

The casting was very special because the client had to choose two lions among some thirty that Kevin Richardson lived with in his natural reserve. Some of them were albinos, others were smaller or bigger. The challenge was to choose two lions that were similar to the mythical Atlas Lion.

After the casting process, the next step was the making of the commercial. Here, it was necessary for the ad shooting team to deal with the lions’ pace of life. For instance, it was easier to make the lions play early in the morning rather than late in the evening. On the other hand, there were many challenges during the filming such as the director had to stay in a cage so that he could film the actor playing with his lions without taking any risk; however, it was very hard to have the lions stay in the field of view of the fixed camera all the time.

All in all, the movie making was an incredibly unique experience with unexpected challenges.

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