Ad of the Day: Dutch supermarket Plus celebrates co-parenting with a bittersweet twist

Dutch grocer Plus has unveiled a cinematic film with a bittersweet twist, moving away from traditional Christmas depictions of the nuclear family to showcase a co-parenting scenario that is closer to reality.

Created by J. Walter Thomspson Amsterdam, the spot tells the story of a little girl who spends her time between the homes of her separated parents.

In the run up to Christmas the girl is shown flitting from home-to-home, and while she appears adjusted she is shown watching old home videos depicting a Christmas where the family were one unit – implying she longs for bygone times.

The film is centered around the supermarket's 'Eat Well Together' positioning, and the action builds up to Christmas dinner. In the Netherlands it it traditional to share a 'gourmet' meal from a large hotplate where each individual guest is given a 'mini pan' to pick and choose their own food.

The girl is shown sharing a meal with her mum's extended family, but just as the ad is about to draw to a close her dad appears holding a pan she had left under the tree for him as a symbolic invitation to join the meal.

To ensure it struck the right tone, J. Walter Thompson Amsterdam involved divorce and separation charity Villa Pinedo to give counsel on campaign development and the sensitivities around the topic.

Directors Ishmael and Basha co-directed the film via Pink Rabbit, while the video is soundtracked by The Cinematic Orchestra.

“In the Netherlands we don’t have quite the same canon of Christmas advertising as for example the UK or the US, but it’s on the rise here," explained as Korsten, creative partner, J. Walter Thompson Amsterdam.

"With this campaign we wanted to pay homage to the craft you see in the great Christmas ads, by being very careful with our cinematography, choice of music, casting and of course our sensitivity to the emotional subject matter. But with a slightly different twist by not shying away from some of the more bittersweet feelings at this time of year."

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Rebecca Stewart

Rebecca Stewart is a reporter at The Drum. Based in London, she writes news, analysis and features around brand marketing and digital innovation. She has interviewed key figures from the likes of Airbnb, Amnesty International, Unilever, Facebook and Spotify, as well as covering international events like Ad Week Europe, Dmexco and Ciclope.

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