Back in 1954 the Screen Advertising World Association (SAWA) set up an ad festival in Venice – which is where the Lions of St Mark’s hail from – and the winner was an Italian stop-mo film for Chlorodont toothpaste, which beat 186 other films.
There were roughly as many delegates as entries.
Things have moved on of course. At one point the festival alternated between Venice and Cannes until the organisers tired of Italian customs impounding films to demand a ransom.
Has advertising improved over the interim (Cannes now awards all sorts of stuff, of course.)
Er, yes, probably.