Sainsbury’s enlists Greatest Showman director for Christmas ad

Sainsbury’s has unveiled its new Christmas advert, ‘The Big Night’, directed by The Greatest Showman director Michael Gracey.

The ad which is now available online and will premier on TV on Monday during Coronation Street on ITV, and is the first to be released by one of the ‘Big Four’ supermarkets.  

Depicting a school Christmas show, it follows a young girl dressed as a star nervously stepping on stage before stunning the audience with a rendition of the New Radicals’ classic 90s song, You Get What You Give.

Laura Boothby, head of broadcast marketing at Sainsbury’s, said: “This year, we have set out to create an advert that captures the passion, emotion and excitement of the festive season, in a setting that’s familiar to us all – no matter how old we are.

“We’re honoured to have worked with Michael Gracey and his team this year’s advert. Michael’s credentials from The Greatest Showman and his track record for putting on a real spectacle meant that he was the perfect fit to help us bring the idea to life and encourage the cast to give all they’ve got on stage.”

However the ad has been questioned over its similarity with the joint effort by John Lewis and Waitrose that ran in September also depicting a children’s play centred around a familiar pop song.

Boothby in defence of the ad said that Sainsbury’s is “not worried at all” about the similarities. She told The Guardian: “Every single school up and down the country is doing a play or nativity play. “When John Lewis launched they set a standard. I wasn’t worried. It is right for Sainsbury’s, it was still the right thing for us.”

The ad forms part of the brand’s large-scale ‘We give all we’ve got for the ones we love’ Christmas marketing campaign with additional food and drink TV, radio, print, digital, social and OOH advertising all planned around the same message.

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