National Jury Introduced as New Element in The Ninth Edition of Astral’s Carte Blanche Competition

— February 28, 2018

– The competition will be executed on large format Digital billboards in all markets –
– Competition to officially launch mid-March –

Bell Media’s Astral announced today that its ninth annual Carte Blanche competition will feature a new component this year: a national jury. For the first time in the creative competition’s history, a jury of prominent creative directors from the advertising industry will determine the winners. Two jurors were selected from each of the three markets where the competition is held – Québec, Toronto, and Western Canada (Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver). The six jury members will shortlist the Top 25 entries and then deliberate together to determine the winners as well as 2nd and 3rd place for each market. In this new voting format, there will not be a general vote from industry members. In the past, registrants evaluated each submission and decided whether or not it is worthy of making it through to the shortlist. The 2018 Carte Blanche jury is composed of: Toronto market jury members
  • Anthony Chelvanathan, Group Creative Director, Leo Burnett
  • Julie Markle, Group Creative Director, Ogilvy
Western Canada market jury members
  • Leia Rogers, Creative Director and Managing Partner, Rethink
  • Neil Shapiro, Group Creative Director, DDB
Quebec market jury members
  • Anne-Claude Chénier, Vice President, Creative Advertising, Cossette
  • Luc Du Sault, Associé, Vice President and Creative Director, lg2
“We are delighted to welcome some of the best creative minds in the industry to participate as the inaugural jury for Carte Blanche,” said Michael Alexandor, Vice-President, Marketing and Innovation, Bell Media. “A jury is a natural evolution for the competition and it will simplify the process for the entrants. The jury represents each region equally to ensure that there is a voice supporting local insight regardless of geography.” The winning creative team is awarded a trip to the prestigious International Festival of Creativity in Cannes, as well as a $50,000 Astral ad campaign for their client. Winners will be announced in all three markets in May. The Carte Blanche website and annual campaign will officially launch mid-March. Juror Comments “I am thrilled to sit on the first Carte Blanche jury,” said Julie Markle, Group Creative Director, Ogilvy. “ Out-of-home is one of the toughest and most exciting media for a creative person to tackle. There's nothing to hide behind; ideas have to be so incredibly simple, and read in three seconds.” "I’m looking forward to seeing the entries from this year’s Carte Blanche competition,” said Neil Shapiro, Group Creative Director, DDB. “Outdoor is a medium that offers great opportunities for innovation. Whether it’s using the existing technology available in the boards, playing off of diverse locations, additional builds or mobile integration it’s a great canvas for breakthrough ideas." “Carte Blanche is an opportunity for creatives to write their own ‘dream brief’ and really flex their creative muscles without the constraints they face in their day-to-day work,” said Leia Rogers, Creative Director and Managing Partner, Rethink. “I think out-of-home is one of the purest forms of advertising,” said Anthony Chelvanathan, Group Creative Director, Leo Burnett. “It’s not unlike the omelet test chefs use to test a rookie’s skills. It’s about getting it perfectly right or not at all. There’s nothing in between, and nothing to hide behind. Exactly like an outdoor idea.” Once again, this year, all entrants will be working with the same format: large format digital billboard.   Photo: 1st row, left to right: Neil Shapiro, Julie Markle, Luc Du Sault; 2nd row, left to right: Leia Rogers, Anthony Chelvanathan, Anne-Claude Chénier.

About Carte Blanche

Carte Blanche invites creative teams from Canadian agencies to execute an idea for the client of their choice, for a chance to win one of three trips to the Cannes Festival of Creativity in June, as well as a $50,000 Astral campaign for their client. The competition is open to advertising agencies in Québec, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, and Edmonton, as well as companies with in-house creative teams. Carte Blanche will announce winners in the Québec, Toronto, and Western Canadian markets. 

About Astral

Astral, a division of Bell Media, is one of Canada’s leading out-of-home advertising companies with more than 31,000 advertising faces strategically located in the British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Québec, and Nova Scotia markets. Driving innovation on one of the country’s the most dynamic media platforms, Astral is committed to staying at the forefront of the latest technological trends, offering advertisers the opportunity to deliver powerful messages that engage and connect with consumers. For more details, visit


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Chloé Boissonnault

General Director, Communications-Marketing, Bell Media Sales
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