Thought last year's John Lewis Christmas tear-jerking man on the moon ad was a blockbuster? That old fella ain't got s*it on Burberry's new festive video, which cost them a whopping £10 million to create.
Coming in at only 3 minutes and 35 seconds, the very short fictional film is written by Oscar-nominated Matt Charman and directed by Oscar-winning Asif Kapadia, and follows the life of the brand's founder, Thomas Burberry, played by Star Wars: The Force Awakens' Domhnall Gleeson.
Sienna Miller also stars playing Burberry's wife, as does Downton Abbey's Lily James as an Amelia Earhart-inspired love interest, while Dominic West plays Ernest Shackleton, the real life explorer who Burberry actually made protective clothing for for his famous 1914 expedition to the Antarctic.
Watching the movie, you can see why it cost so much. It has steam trains, vintage planes and explosive war scenes, all squashed into a short space of time. But strangely, you understand everything. Normally short fashion clips make zero sense (like the Bleu du Chanel "I'm not going to be the person I'm expected to be anymore" advert), but you follow and absorb the story as if it were over an hour long.
Christopher Bailey, chief creative and chief executive of Burberry, said of the ad: “This Christmas, as we celebrate our 160th anniversary we wanted to tell the story of Thomas Burberry – pioneer, inventor, innovator, and the man behind the iconic trenchcoat – in our own words. The film we have made is a brief glimpse inspired by his full and extraordinary life, which threaded its way through the history of the 20th century in all its tumultuous highs and lows.”
The ad launched today across social media channels, while a shorter version will also be playing in cinemas around the UK.
Style and substance. Who'd have thought it possible?