Marketing News South Africa

Disney celebrates 100 years of storytelling with A Wish For The Holidays campaign

Disney's first live-action festive ad, A Wish For The Holidays, was fully shot in Cape Town, South Africa and features singing by the South African kids' choir.
Image supplied. The South African kids choir are featured in Disney’s first live-action festive ad, A Wish For The Holidays, which was fully shot in Cape Town
Image supplied. The South African kids choir are featured in Disney’s first live-action festive ad, A Wish For The Holidays, which was fully shot in Cape Town

Part of Disney’s recently launched holiday campaign, May Your Wishes Come True tells the stories of families and friends from around the world, who are united by a universal wish to be together with their loved ones during the holidays, recognising a range of festive traditions. It represents six geographical locations and languages

The campaign focuses on the power of wishes for its 100th anniversary and takes inspiration from the soon-to-be-released Walt Disney Animation Studios’ movie Wish.

Launching in more than 50 countries, the ad is directed by Grammy Award-winning Nigerian/British director Meji Alabi.

“I feel lucky to have collaborated with such a diverse group of people on Disney’s Holiday campaign this year. There were so many stand-out moments for me during the filming, but I think the most memorable was watching the South African kids' choir sing their lines. It truly gave me goosebumps,” says Alabi.

The ad includes the globally recognisable song A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes from Cinderella, rearranged to enable multiple performers to come together with one united voice.

English-language voice of Asha and Academy Award-winning actress and singer Ariana DeBose delivers the opening line in the English version, and voice actresses in markets around the world sing it in other languages.

100 years of storytelling

The ad has been globally produced by Ridley Scott Associates across the US, UK and South Africa and developed in collaboration with the Disney Parks, Experiences and Products internal advertising agency Yellow Shoes.

Joss Hastings, VP gllobal marketing, Disney consumer products, games & publishing, says, “Holiday traditions may look different around the world but however and wherever you’re celebrating, we all share the wish to be with the ones we love during this special time of year.

“Inspired by Walt Disney Animation Studios’ new movie Wish, the advertisement brings voices from around the world together as a global choir for a powerful rendition of the iconic A Dream Is a Wish Your Heart Makes.

“We hope fans enjoy the new twist on a Disney classic as we celebrate 100 years of storytelling and the integral role that music has played.”

Mall activations

The global premiere of the advert comes hot on the heels of the recent unveiling of a co-branded celebratory aircraft livery in collaboration with Lift Airlines, to kick off May Your Wishes Come True.

“Following the collaboration with Lift Airlines, what better way to continue the launch of our biggest retail campaign to date in South Africa than with this locally-shot advert,” says Luke Roberts, general manager, consumer products, games and publishing, The Walt Disney Company Africa.

“Inspired by the universal truth that they wish to be together during the holidays, we look forward to celebrating with South African families and fans throughout the festive period.”

May Your Wishes Come True brings stories and characters to life through products across multiple categories: from toys and apparel to jewellery, technology and consumables, including brand-new products from the movie Wish, including Lego and figurines.

Various activations will take place at shopping malls around the country, including Disney-plush-adorned Christmas Trees.

In association with Visa and Investec, with support from Toys R US, the trees will feature the opportunity for visitors to give back through donations to Reach for a Dream.

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