Tuesday 22 August 2017

WATCH: Have James Corden and Sainsbury's stolen the show with their musical Christmas advert?

Dave rushing back to the Toy Factory
Dave rushing back to the Toy Factory
Sainsbury's advert features puppet versions of "Dave" and his family
Sainsbury's will be donating its profits to Great Ormond Street Hospital's childrens charity

Ashley Armstrong

Twerking office managers and train delays are just two of the struggles of modern British life depicted in Sainsbury's musical comedy Christmas campaign.

The supermarket has called on British comedian James Corden, Hollywood producers and the latest animation techniques to ensure that it has a worthy follow-up to last year's successful advert featuring Judith Kerr's Mog.

This year's Christmas film uses stop-frame animation techniques, which requires every shot to be filmed at a quarter of a second a time, and laser-printed puppets made by Mackinnon and Saunders, the Manchester-based company behind Fantastic Mr Fox.

The intricate set took 16 weeks to build, 420 hours to shoot, and eight weeks of post-production. Sainsbury's has not revealed how much the advert cost to make.

Sainsbury's advert features puppet versions of
Sainsbury's advert features puppet versions of "Dave" and his family

The advert tells the story of Dave during the busy Christmas season who is overwhelmed with things to do and misses his childrens' bedtime.  One night when he returns home late, he spots a gingerbread decorated to look like him. Inspired, he rushes back to the toy factory where he works on create a series of clones - from tapping monkeys, toy planes and nodding dogs - to cover his jobs and give him more time with his family.

"The advert reflects a typical family juggling everything they have to at Christmas time, we just hope it puts a smile on people's faces", said Sarah Kilmartin, head of Sainsbury's campaign .

The story is told via an original song, which will be released on Spotify, sung by British actor James Corden and composed by Flight of the Conchords Bret McKenzie, who won an Oscar in 2012 for the best original song in The Muppets.

"If I had a clone, so I wasn't alone, I'd definitely spend time with my family", Mr McKenzie said of the advert's plot.

Sainsbury's 'The Greatest Gift' advert
Sainsbury's 'The Greatest Gift' advert

The campaign will raise funds for Great Ormond Street Hospital's charity with profits from a gingerbread "Dave" and an animation kit, available for £5, helping to fund accommodation for families near the hospital.

Tim Johnson, chief executive of the hospital's charity said: "At Christmas, time spent with the people you love is precious. For the families of patients at Great Ormond Street Hospital who are unable to go home at Christmas, this is particularly true. More than half of the patients at Great Ormond Street Hospital live outside of London, and many are hours away from home."

Sainsbury's will be donating its profits to Great Ormond Street Hospital's childrens charity
Sainsbury's will be donating its profits to Great Ormond Street Hospital's childrens charity

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