Christmas is definitely upon us. Where once the Coca-Cola advert was once the sign that festivities were imminent, the cultural signifier, in the UK, at least, is the now annual John Lewis advert. Airing tonight at 9.30pm, Moz the Monster is directed by Michel Gondry and was created by agency adam&eveDDB.
The two minute ad charts the friendship between a child and Moz the Monster who lives under his bed, making strong reference to the Pixar classic Monsters, Inc. – particularly when a small sock becomes attached to the monster’s fur. “When I told my ex girlfriend I was doing the next John Lewis Christmas film she said: ‘You have big shoes to fill, this John Lewis commercial must make people cry, don’t forget’,” said Gondry. “Last week I showed it to her and she cried. Phew.”
The story is accompanied with a now customary stripped-back cover version of a famous song. This year the duty falls to Elbow who have reworked the track Golden Slumbers by The Beatles. Guy Garvey, lead singer of Elbow said: “This project was such a pleasure. Michel Gondry and the song did all the work for us. We are really proud to be involved.”
The advert is accompanied by a host of extra activity. At the John Lewis flagship shop on Oxford Street visitors will be able to see and hear what’s thought to be the world’s first farting and snoring window as Moz plays in the rooms in Joe’s house. On Facebook people will be able to ‘Mozify’ their face using their Facebook camera, and in ten shops customers will be able to create their own monster selfie at a Monster Maker station.
A recording of actress Sally Phillips reading the Moz The Monster story will be available for download from johnlewis.com, Sky boxes and Google Home. Google Home customers will also be able to personalise their story choosing their own sound effects.