- Tuesday, Mar. 22, 2016
- CANNES, France
Journalist Shane Smith, founder and CEO of VICE, has been named the Cannes Lions 2016 Media Person of the Year.
Introduced in 1999, the Media Person of the Year Award recognizes innovators who have shaped the future of media.
Smith is a producer of Emmy, Peabody, and National Magazine Award-winning content, recognized not just for helping to reinvent news documentary but for helping to present complicated and urgent subjects like the environment and criminal justice in fresh, accessible terms. He has transformed VICE from a print magazine into an international multimedia brand that operates a network of digital channels, linear television networks, a mobile content studio, a feature film division, and an in-house creative services agency. Most recently, Smith has struck deals with leading platforms across mobile, digital and linear to syndicate VICE’s award-winning video to viewers everywhere.
Smith is also the host and executive producer for the Emmy Award-winning news series, VICE, on HBO. Smith has reported from the world’s most isolated and difficult places, including North Korea, Iran, Afghanistan, Kashmir, Liberia and Greenland.
Commenting on the Cannes honor, Smith said, “When I was a young man one of my great joys was to go to my local repertory theater and watch the feature film of the best of Cannes Lions awards. To see the funny, salacious and over the top commercials from around the world offered a window into a different and tantalizing dimension to a teenager living in snowy Canada. As such, to accept the award for Cannes Lions Media Person of the Year is simultaneously humbling and immensely pleasurable because although you don’t get into the business to win hardware, it sure makes life a lot more fun when you do.”
Philip Thomas, CEO, Lions Festivals, said, “Shane is an influential figure in today’s media landscape. Not only is he responsible for taking VICE, which started life as a punk magazine, and expanding it to become the world’s leading global youth media company, but also, beyond this, he’s a critically acclaimed journalist.
The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity will honor Smith with his award during a formal ceremony on June 22.
Cannes Lions is an eight-day Festival and Awards celebrating creative excellence across all forms of brand communications and runs from June 18-25 in Cannes.