Top 10 MENA commercials 2015

1) Crunch Egypt – ‘Skenshayzar’

A Ramadan hit, this Ali Ali-directed spot for Nestlé Crunch attracted more than a million YouTube views in just five days. Working the tensions between young and old, it created huge social media buzz around the fictional product ‘Skenshayzar’ and owed much of its success to the brilliant performance of the uncle.

Agency J. Walter Thompson Cairo
Creatives Mohamed Hammady, Amr El Haddad, Ahmed Waheed, Eslam Hossam
Director Ali Ali
Production company Lighthouse

2) UN Women – ‘Give mom back her name’

“I have watched this film so many times I almost know it backwards,” wrote Richard Copping, executive creative director of Saatchi & Saatchi Dubai in Private View. “I like ideas that teach me new things, things I never thought existed; that’s why this industry is so exciting.” Meticulously produced, focused and educating, ‘Give mom back her name’ won an inaugural glass Lion at this year’s Cannes and broke the Egyptian social taboo of not disclosing one’s mother’s name in public.

Agency Impact BBDO
Creatives Fadi Yaish, Maged Nassar,
Directors Maged Nassar, Tameem Younes
Production company Bigfoot

3) du – ‘Too Distressing’

Cinematic, immersive, beautifully crafted and filled with the kind of intricate detailing and cinematography that makes careers, Leo Burnett’s ‘du Tuesday’ TV and online campaign for telco du highlighted the fact that some films are best not watched alone.

Agency Leo Burnett Dubai
Creatives Ali Ali, Maged Nassar
Director Ali Ali
Production company Dejavu

 4) Zain Kuwait – ‘We know you well’

When faced with certain situations we tend to go back to our roots and this campaign for Zain Kuwait cleverly highlighted this fact, with cosmopolitan Kuwaitis the butt of a perfectly pitched mickey take. Finely directed and with an amusing voiceover, the commercials ended with the line “naarfik zain”, which literally translates as “we know you well”

Agency Bustop
Creatives Maryam Al Khatrash, Mariam Al Mutairi, Tarek Jammal, Aida Al Zanki, Aziz Al Jasmi
Director Aziz Al Jasmi
Production company Cinemagic

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5) Electricite De Zahle – ‘24-hour electricity’

“It takes some serious guts from the client to release such a script in our so politically correct and ‘pasteurised’ communication world,” wrote Hubert Boulos, chief executive officer of DDB, in Private View. “This is definitely the kind of work to watch over and over again and to share.” Funny, charming and addictive, this campaign for Electricite De Zahle proved that great work can come from the most unlikeliest of places.

Agency M&C Saatchi Beirut
Creatives Danielle Metni Chebli, Maya Toutounji, Maya Maacaron
Director Andre Chammas

6) Mobinil – ‘It Belongs Online’

“Hey, for those who have forgotten, this is called advertising,” wrote DDB’s Hubert Boulos once again in Private View. Strangely enthralling, this series of ads revealed what happens when you see online behaviour played out in real life. Humorous, well acted and a viral hit, the pick of the bunch was ‘Muscle Man’, which drew viewers into the entire series.

Agency FP7/CAI
Creatives Ahmed Hafez Youness, Rami El Kerdani, Moemen El Siwi, Menna El Kiey, Rana Khairy, Fadila El Assiouty, Nour Abdelhamid, Hassan Abouelrouss Production company Lighthouse

7) Vodafone Egypt – ‘Ramadan’

With almost nine million views on YouTube, it’s hard to argue with the success of this Ramadan treat from Vodafone Egypt. A powerful execution with beautiful cinematography and a long list of celebrities, the film struck an appealing balance between heart- warming emotions and entertaining lightheartedness.

Agency J. Walter Thompson Cairo
Creatives Mohamed Hammady, Amr El Haddad, Ahmed Waheed Hamdy, Sabrina El Ghoneimy
Director Omar Hilal
Production company ASAP

8) Kaza Order – ‘We don’t eat the same things’

Independent creative outfit Agency 622 teamed up with director Ali Ali to produce a series of one-shot wonders for Egyptian food ordering platform Kaza Order. Atmospheric, slightly ominous and utilising tracking shots to reveal a diversity of orders, the spots were a cut above anything else seen in this category.

Agency Agency 622
Creatives Meryl Afifi
Director Ali Ali
Production company Key Films

 

9) Café Super Brasil – ‘Wein el Ahweh?’

A celebration of the iconic singer Sabah and Lebanese culture in general, this campaign was packed with kitsch art direction and over-the-top acting but was fun and featured a great soundtrack by Zeid Hamdan and Marc Codsi.

Agency Drive Dentsu Beirut
Creatives Alain Shoucair, Marc Abou Jaoude
Director Chadi Younes
Production company Clandestino Film

10) du – ‘Tropa for Life’

“While this ad won’t trouble the carpets at any award shows, it’s great, on brief, watchable, nicely shot and comes with a kicking track. Basking in the warmth.” So said Oliver Robinson, senior creative director UAE at FP7/DXB in Private View. Spot on.

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