Mog so Cute

CHRISTMAS 2015

In keeping with the festive spirit, we thought we’d list our top 3 contenders for our favourite animated Christmas adverts of all time.

JOHN LEWIS

Though the department store chain’s 2015 campaign took the world by storm this year, we still have a special place in our hearts for The Bear & The Hare, their 2013 animated advert.

The 2-minute clip tells the tale of a thoughtful Hare who wants to make sure his friend Bear doesn’t miss out on Christmas. Aaron Blaise, a veteran Disney animator, created a painstaking amount of detail in both the 2D models and the hand-drawn animations, traditional techniques that are rarely used in modern day animation studios.

With a budget of £7million, the creative team combined these forms of animation to create a fresh yet familiar world that makes us nostalgic for the days of Disney.

SAINSBURY’S

One of Britain’s best loved children’s book characters, Judith Kerr’s Mog the Cat, is brought to life through the magic of 3D animation in a feel-good 3-minute clip, which premiered across UK television channels on November 12th this year. Kerr worked alongside Sainsbury’s to develop the narrative of the advert, in support of Save the Children’s work with child literacy around the United Kingdom.

The advert was created by advertising agency Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, and produced by FrameStore, an Oscar award winning creative studio. VFX Supervisors Ben Cronin and Grant Walker, and CG Supervisor Ahmed Gharraph, led their team of artists to create Mog, using feline and human references to carefully construct her emotions. Actor Jeremy Swift was rigged with a GoPro in order to create references for facial expressions, resulting in a captivating and entirely human emotive edge to Mog’s face.

The creative studio went beyond typical CG rigging layers of skeleton and muscle to create a ‘layer of fat’, which was animated to give her an incredibly realistic catlike movement. The end result is a heartwarming tale about one disaster-prone but well-meaning cat, the importance of family, and coming together to celebrate the holiday season.

 


#JUSTINO

Created by Leo Burnett, Madrid, and directed by Against All Odds at Passion Pictures, this heartwarming animated short was designed to promote Spain’s Christmas lottery draw ‘El Gordo,’ running on the theme of ‘there’s no bigger prize than sharing.’

The clip features a Pixar-esque style of animation to tell the story of Justino, an elderly security guard who works at a mannequin factory, spending his lonely graveyard shifts surrounded by the models. With chances to interact with his colleagues few and far between, it’s up to Justino to devise clever ways to connect with them, using the mannequins to create situations that are equal parts amusing and poignant. The creative team undertook a huge amount of research on all the objects in each scene, to add a sense of realism to the animation.

Though the minimal speech that’s included is in Spanish, the emotion is palpable and the meaning profound, no matter what language you understand.

The campaign also includes Justino’s own Instagram account, where over 13,000 fans follow him as he goes about day-to-day life.