"The campaign had a greater impact than all of my sporting results."
A short film made for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games has picked up two prestigious awards at the Cannes advertising festival in France.
The film, which went viral on social media in September 2015, challenges society's perceptions of people with an impairment and celebrates the abilities of some of Brazil's leading Para athletes
In the public relations category, the video received a bronze lion for content-led engagement and marketing. In the media category, it won a bronze lion for use of branded content for digital or social media. The film was also a finalist for two other awards.
The Cannes festival is considered to be the Academy Awards for the advertising industry. It recognises the most creative campaigns of the year; a bronze lion is the equivalent of a bronze medal.
In the film, three Brazilian Para athletes turn up unannounced at gyms. The ill-disguised derision of other members turns to open-mouthed astonishment as the stars start their routines and are soon outperforming everyone else in the building. Hidden cameras film the proceedings.
The spontaneous reactions of the other gym-goers are genuine, said Ricardo Cirillo, manager of advertising and promotion at Rio 2016.
"They were really surprised. If in the gym it was like that, just imagine the surprises in store for people who attend a Paralympic event in person."
The Para athletes involved are powerlifter Luciano 'the Mountain' Dantas, amputee 'blade runner' Vinícius Rodrigues, and visually impaired judoka Lúcia Teixeira.
The film, which was produced by Ogilvy for the Rio 2016 organising committee, has helped engage the Brazilian public with the Paralympic Games, which begin on 7 September.
"The campaign had a greater impact than all of my sporting results," says Lúcia Teixeira said, who sent all her fully-sighted opponents crashing onto the judo mat during filming. "Before the film was made, almost nobody knew I was an athlete."
Sport fans from around the world can now buy their Paralympic tickets for Rio 2016 from authorised ticket resellers (ATRs)
The IPC’s Global ATR is Jet Set Sports, and Rio 2016 tickets and packages can be purchased on the CoSport website.
Residents of Brazil can buy 2016 Paralympics tickets directly from the Rio 2016 website.
Visa International is the exclusive payment card and the official payment system for the Paralympic Games.