Not so dumb: Ad catches on in big way at Cannes

An animated public service announcement about dumb ways to die has made it to the history books by being named the best television advertisement in the world.

The catchy commercial, a three-minute black comedy for Melbourne's Metro Trains titled ''Dumb Ways to Die'', has won a record-breaking five prizes at the Cannes International Festival of Creativity.

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Dumb Ways to Die

A video by Metro takes a very cute and cuddly approach to the issue of safety around trains.

The campaign, produced by McCann Melbourne, has become the most successful commercial in the history of the awards - the ad world's version of the Oscars - after winning five grand prix trophies.

The cartoon used colourful blobs to highlight reckless and gruesome ways to die including ''setting fire to your hair'', ''using your private parts as piranha bait'' and ''standing on the edge of train station platform''.

A screen grab from the video, Dumb Ways to Die.
A screen grab from the video, Dumb Ways to Die. 

Since being published on YouTube in November 2012 the video has been viewed more than 50 million times. The soundtrack, written by Cat Empire keyboardist Ollie McGill and performed by Tinpan Orange frontwoman Emily Lubitz, made it into the top 10 on the global iTunes charts 24-hours after release.

A gaming app has since been developed.

Australia's advertising industry is earning a reputation around the world as a hotbed for unique creativity. Tourism Queensland's ''Best Job in the World'' campaign set a record at the 2009 festival by winning three prizes.