The British Television Advertising Awards program returns for another smashing run of screenings at the Walker Art Center
, December 4January 2, where over 20,000 people saw the 2008 award-winning spots. Awards Administrator Peter Bigg will reprise his annual role as host of the opening-night screenings on Friday, December 4, at 7 and 9:30 pm. Remaining programs include both evening and matinee screenings. To complement this popular December tradition, Wolfgang Puck offers an array of hearty fare at the Walker Pub in the Bazinet Garden Lobby and in 20.21 Restaurant & Bar, as well as evening pre-show drinks in the Hennepin Lobby.
Brimming with creativity and chosen by top advertising executives and producers across the globe, the sly, sexy, hilarious, and thought-provoking British spots have been a Walker highlight for 21 years. The program this year includes dancing marionettes, monkeys, and nudists as well as American celebrities Snoop Dogg, Rob Lowe, and Anjelica Huston hawking products to UK audiences. Also featured are an 80s flashback for Virgin Airlines, a scandalous piece for Guess apparel, and highlights from the history of 20th-century Britain condensed into 120 seconds for a bread commercial. Among the standouts this year is a spectacular skydiving stunt for Honda that was broadcast live. Not to be missed. 2009, video, 80 minutes.
Since the early 1980s, BTAA has exhibited its annual showreel at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, where the award-winning spots subsequently enter the museums permanent collection. When the screenings began, they offered an American audience exposure to the originality, wit, and creativity of British advertising as well as a showcase for the early work of film directors such as Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, Hugh Hudson, and Alan Parker as they were becoming established Hollywood directors. Since then, the showreel screenings have developed an influential reputation in the U.S. for creative excellence. Public and professional interest have spawned further screenings across the country. Besides the Walker, the 2009 awards will be shown in venues around the country, including the Detroit Institute of Arts; the Cleveland Museum of Art; Cleveland Cinemateque; Northwest Film Center, Portland; the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; and Honolulu Academy.