This Billboard, for Oliver Stone’s Snowden, Has Been Spying on People in Toronto

And livestreaming their movements

Headshot of Tim Nudd

Here's a pretty great out-of-home execution for Oliver Stone's upcoming film Snowden, about the NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden—a billboard that's been spying on pedestrians in Toronto and streaming footage of their movements on the street.

Snowden's revelations about the NSA, of course, raised troubling questions about mass surveillance. And the billboard—timed to the Toronto International Film Festival, where Stone's movie premiered—itself embodies those very issues.

DentsuBos and Elevation Pictures set up surveillance cameras with motion tracking technology around Dundas Square. The cameras tracked pedestrians' movements and livestreamed them onto a giant video board.

"It was very interesting seeing people's reactions," said Jon Frier, creative director at Dentsubos. "Some felt violated, some terrified, and some even praised it as the creepiest thing ever. Funnily, almost all looked around to see if there were other cameras spying on them. Which in itself is very telling."

DentsuBos worked with Cieslok Media on the billboard, which will be up through Sunday. 


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@nudd Tim Nudd is a former creative editor of Adweek.
Publish date: September 16, 2016 https://dev.adweek.com/creativity/billboard-oliver-stones-snowden-has-been-spying-people-toronto-173553/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT