“Create a modern Christmas tale that’s as entertaining as the content on Prime Video and make people smile this festive season.” In nine weeks. Oh, and it’ll be the brand’s first Christmas ad in Europe, across seven countries.
It’s the sort of brief to induce nervous smiles perhaps but Madrid agency CYW’s calm, positive and collaborative way of working produced a spot for Amazon that wowed audiences and has now won the November-December Thinkboxes award for TV creativity, run in association with Campaign.
“TV is still a very relevant medium,” notes Xuan Pham, creative director Europe at Amazon Prime. “Even more around Christmas time as it traditionally brings families together. Our approach for this campaign was to make a short film, highly crafted and cinematic. There was no doubt for us that big TV screens would provide the right viewing experience for more enjoyment.”
“An Unlikely Friendship” is the tale of an unexpected bond, forged through a shared love for entertainment, between two misfits: Hattie, a bullied hyena who can’t smile, and Carl, a grumpy zookeeper who can’t find any reasons to smile.
Directed by Chris Balmond and produced by Blur and Outsider, the ad builds on the brand positioning, “Every Smile Tells A Story”, and is set to an arrangement of Smile by Nat King Cole, performed by Joy Crookes.