Godzilla versus King Kong: Sainsbury’s/AMV challenge John Lewis/A&E for top Christmas ad spot

They may be fellow Omnicom siblings and, therefore, the best of friends but one should never under-estimate the rivalry ‘twixt AMV BBDO and adam&eveDDB, likely to be the UK’s top two agencies by billings when the numbers are counted at the end of this year.

A&E launched its John Lewis ‘Man on the moon’ epic for JL last week, now AMV BBDO debuts its Xmas campaign for Sainsbury’s, featuring popular children’s book character Mog the cat. Author Judith Kerr, who has previously rejected commercial this and that, appears in the film.

JL has mined a rich and consistent seam of emotion in its succession of blockbuster JL campaigns, Sainsbury’s has varied its ‘Christmas is for sharing’ theme: a drama doc two years ago, the Great War England/Germany football match last year and now Mog.

Profits from sales of Mog toys and books at Sainsbury’s go to Save the Children’s child literacy project, John Lewis is supporting Age UK. Kerr has written a new Mog story to tie in with the campaign.

Beautifully realised, could hardly have been done better.

Credit to CGI wizards Framestore, copywriter Alex Grieve, art director Adrian Rossi and director James Rouse for Outsider.

It’s our ad of the year (so far): sorry Brothers and Sisters whose brilliant Sky ad with Thierry Henry has been gazumped at the last.

MAA creative scale: 9.5.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.