Awards News

Awards: AD STARS 2021 Awards now open for entries until May 15, 2021

BUSAN, SOUTH KOREA – AD STARS is now welcoming entries free-of-charge to the AD STARS 2021 Awards – the deadline is 15th May, and the top two Grand Prix of the Year winners will win US$10,000 each. Now in its 14th year, AD STARS is one of the fastest-growing creative industries festivals in the world with over 20,000 entries received in 2020.

AD STARS is also inviting expressions of interest from industry leaders who are interested in judging or presenting at AD STARS 2021. The deadline for juror and speaker submissions is 31st March.

“Whilst we are delighted to announce our call-for-entries, we are sad to say our festival and judging must take place virtually once again this year as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, our industry continues to produce purposeful ideas that are changing the world at a pivotal moment in history, and we are proud to offer creators a free global awards platform on which to celebrate this work,” said Hwanjin Choi, Chair of AD STARS.


The AD STARS 2021 Online Festival will run from 25th to 27th August. All winners will be announced on 27th August 2021.

“Any metal awarded at AD STARS is a career highlight – all winners should be very proud,” said Levi Slavin, Chief Creative Officer, Colenso BBDO, who was an Executive Judge at AD STARS 2020.

Valerie Madon, Chief Creative Officer, Asia at VMLY&R, Singapore, was also an Executive Judge at AD STARS 2020. She said: “Being probably the only show that allows work to be entered for free, it is highly commendable. It gives many young creatives the opportunity to shine and I believe many talents are very grateful for this generosity.”

The AD STARS 2021 Awards include the following categories: Film, Print, Outdoor, Radio & Audio, Design, Interactive, Mobile, Data Insights, Social & Influencer, PR, Brand Experience & Activation, Direct, Media, Integrated, Innovation, Diverse Insights, Place Brand, Creative eCommerce, and Pivot.

The Pivot category was introduced in 2020 to honor campaigns that have amplified and repositioned brands in response to COVID-19 or helped to overcome the pandemic through public health initiatives. A new sub-category, “Livestream”, has been added to the Social & Influencer category. There are also separate categories for Public Service Advertising and Video Stars.

AD STARS’ theme for 2021 is ‘Shift’. Choi explains: “COVID-19 is transforming lives. New consumer behaviors span all areas of life, from how we work to how we shop to how we entertain ourselves. These rapid shifts have important implications for marketers and we would like to talk more about this ‘Shift’ at AD STARS 2021. If you are interested in sharing your expertise with our global audience, we welcome your ideas for speaker submissions.”

Headquartered in South Korea, AD STARS exists to support and promote creators all over the world, giving them a global platform on which to share their work and raise awareness of game-changing ideas. It’s free to enter all categories excluding the Innovation and Integrated categories, which cost KRW 100,000 (approx. US$100) per entry.

To enter the AD STARS 2021 Awards, visit


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