John Lewis kicks off Christmas ad battle early with Elton John leak

The John Lewis Christmas publicity machine seems to be cranking up earlier than usual this year with what looks like an inspired leak that Elton John, currently embarking on his last big UK tour, is to star in its yuletide epic from adam&eveDDB for a reported fee of £5m.

Well someone’s got to pay for his summer holidays.

John Lewis has recently rebranded as John Lewis & Partners, highlighting its service as opposed to “never knowingly undersold” (which it wishes it wasn’t as discounts rule the high street). This was launched with a summertime A&E epic, also featuring Waitrose.

JL&P is being uncharacteristically coy about Elton, happy for people to speculate away. Over the years A&E and Omnicom sibling AMV BBDO have tried to steal each other’s thunder at Christmas, AMV when it had Sainsbury’s. Now it has Asda so we’ll see.

But it did feature John in a recent effort for Snickers. Whether or not he received another £5m we know not (unlikely, it’s a cameo).

Suggesting Elton is better at singing his own stuff rather than acting or rapping. The JL&P effort seemingly features him singing his most famous tune, Your Song, an appropriately sentimental number for Christmas.

So even though signing up the veteran warbler is not quite the exclusive deal client and agency may have hoped for, it will still guarantee JL&P lots of Christmas attention; giving the lie to speculation that the retailer was going to sit things out this Christmas.

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