2020 was such a strange year that even one of the most optimistic people in the world, Santa Claus, might have trouble finding something good.
In the latest vacation movie from Xfinity, Steve Carell plays a stressed Santa Claus who wants to be inspired by his elves to keep the kids excited during an anything but normal 2020. Comcast’s Xfinity has recreated vacation magic, with a touch of Carell’s flawless timing as modern Claus. It’s a worthy sequel to last year’s ET-inspired Holiday Reunion ad.
Goodby Silverstein & Partners’ three and a half minute film, The Greatest Gift, features Carell who worked with the agency on Pepsi’s 2019 Super Bowl ads and is trying to be a fun old elf, but his Ho Quickly recognizes Ho Hos doesn’t have 2020 fed up. He gathers his elves by videoconferencing and tells them the usual gifts won’t make it, and tells them to come up with something better.
The movie is full of all the quirks and annoyances that 2020 brought with it, such as: But the script keeps it fresh, especially in front of a North Pole backdrop that feels both fantastically idyllic and rustic real.
As the elves try to come up with the perfect gift, a hardworking worker thinks of a gem – togetherness – that is wrapped for the holidays. Carell’s Santa Claus is full of doubt and stress, but his wife Claus assures him that it will work.
“The holidays are really about moments of togetherness with the people you love and they remind you of the most important things, especially given the rigors of the past year. I hope this cute little story is a bit of fun, ”Carell said in a statement.
When you watch the elves gather that typical holiday cheer – the smell of grandma’s kitchen, grandpa’s goofy stories, family snowball fights – on a remake of Supertramp’s “Dreamer” by Roger Hodgeson, some great visual gags emerge. The film was shot in collaboration with production company MJZ and director Craig Gillespie (I, Tonya and Disney’s upcoming Cruella).
The short film shows that technology can bring people together, even if they are not personal.
“This year, the Internet has kept us connected more than ever, allowing us to do more than we thought possible in the face of sub-ideal circumstances,” said Todd Arata, senior vice president of branding at Comcast.
A two-minute version airs during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Beyond the film, Xfinity brings moments of togetherness to life with a Pinterest activation called “The Greatest Gift Shoppe” – a virtual shop designed to keep families connected during the holidays.
“Having the opportunity to tell a story about how Santa and the Elves work together to create the impossible in a year we all had to grapple with today’s work was a special experience,” added the Co – Chair of GS&P added Jeff Goodby. “And the chance to do it with an actor as popular as Steve Carell gives the film that extra warmth.”
Campaign Name: The Greatest Gift
Agency: Goodby Silverstein & Partners
Main marketing offer: Sophia Ahmad
SVP, brand marketing, messaging and media: Peter Intermaggio
SVP, Brand Marketing IMC: Todd Arata
Vice President, Brand IMC: Dustin Hayes
Senior Director, IMC Brand: Rose Holden
Manager, IMC brand: Gabby Maunder
Managing Director, Social Marketing: Nader Ali-Hassan
Director, Social Marketing: Jennifer Marder
Community Manager, Xfinity brand: Lacey Ketchell