Epoch Films Withdraws JCPenney 'Speed Dressing' From Cannes
About as surprising as a traffic meeting on a Monday morning, Epoch Films, after talks with Cannes organizers, JCPenney and Saatchi & Saatchi, has decided to withdraw its Speed Dressing Cannes entry which was awarded a Bronze Lion. The ad, one of the best ever created for the clothing retailer since Saatchi & Saatchi won the account, was shot by Epoch films without, as all parties claim, the knowledge of JCPenney or Saatchi & Saatchi. It's not the first time a faux ad has been submitted, duped everyone and won but it has turned into one of the more high profile offenses.
So there you have it. Story over. It's sad, though. Apart from the seemingly unprofessional and devious behavior apparently displayed by Epoch Films, this JCPenney ad could have been a powerful element in the retailer's shift from irrelevance to relevance. Some would argue the ad's message pushed the boundaries of good taste. Others (the smart ones) would argue the effort was a brilliantly crafted piece connecting the retailer to the very people JCPenney needs to walk through its doors in order to survive.
Certainly, it would have been a risky move for JCPenney to have officially approved this ad. However, risky moves such this is, often times, are the only thing capable of righting a sinking ship.