We’ve reached that time of the year when the usual 30-second clips designed to make you buy things are replaced with sentimental short films… ‘tis the season of the ‘Christmas Advert’.
Fast food giant McDonald’s is getting its foot in the door early this year, with its Christmas advert for 2020 premiering on television this Sunday (15 November), on ITV.
But it's not just another misty-eyed promotion; the campaign is also doing its bit for charity.
Here is everything you need to know about it.
What happens in the advert?
According to McDonald’s, its new animated advert tells a “heart-warming story”.
It sees a mother desperately trying to encourage her teenage son to put down his screens and take part in family rituals in the run-up to Christmas.
The child in the advert can't seem to pull himself away from his video games; he’s presented with a box of Christmas decorations to help put with his mother, but ignores his ‘inner child’ to focus on his game instead.
With more of us than ever kept inside this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a reliance on screens for entertainment has become much more commonplace, and so the ad could ring true for many young people and parents.
What's the soundtrack?
The music accompanying Christmas adverts is almost as highly anticipated as the ads themselves, and can propel lesser known acts to superstardom.
Soundtracking McDonald’s effort is English singer-songwriter Becky Hill, who described her involvement with the Christmas ad campaign as “a dream”.
The 26-year-old became the first The Voice UK contestant to score a UK number 1 when the song ‘Gecko (Overdrive)’ – on which Hill provided vocals – topped the charts in 2014.
She has provided a stripped back version of ‘Forever Young’ – originally released by German synth-pop band Alphaville in 1984 – for the advert.
"The message in the McDonalds advert is one I wish I'd seen when I was a teenager," said Hill, “take every moment in the purest form as life changes so quickly.
"This Christmas, I am celebrating without two very important people in my life & this campaign has reminded me just how precious every Christmas with my nearest & dearest.”
How is it helping charity?
Hill’s version of the song has been available for streaming and download from Thursday 12 November, with 10p from every download going to food charity FareShare, who work to distribute meals to families in need.
Paul Pomroy, Chief Executive Officer, McDonald’s UK and Ireland said: “In a year like no other, I am proud that we can stand together with organisations like FareShare.”
"We will provide funding to the charity to enable them to redistribute over five million meals to vulnerable families.”
FareShare Commercial Director Alyson Walsh said: "McDonald’s is extending its generous support to our mission and specifically enabling us to get meals to those in need between now and Easter.
"We know first-hand how much communities are struggling at the moment and this partnership means that we can support grass roots organisations across the UK with much-needed food.”
When can I watch it?
The advert will premiere on TV this Sunday 15 November during the opening episode of 2020’s I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here! on ITV.
It’s not been confirmed at what time the commercial will air (the show’s producers do want you to watch the whole thing after all), but the episode is scheduled to broadcast between 9pm and 10.35pm.
The clip is available to view on YouTube now.
A version of this article originally appeared on our sister title, the Yorkshire Evening Post