Best of the Decade: John Lewis' tale of a boy counting down till Christmas marked a turning point for holiday advertising

'The Long Wait' from Adam&Eve and directed by Dougal Wilson is Christmas spirit at its finest

Published On
Nov 13, 2011

Editor's Pick

Creativity looks back on the brand ideas and campaigns that made the last decade. See the full lineup here

Best of the Decade

You might call John Lewis’ “The Long Wait” the U.K.’s version of Apple’s “1984” because its arrival marked the moment when Christmas advertising in the nation—and arguably the rest of the world—started to take on Super Bowl-size stakes. The holiday film from Adam&Eve and directed by Dougal Wilson debuted in 2011 and centered on a young boy eagerly counting down the days till Xmas. With an unexpectedly heartwarming twist, it set the stage for more emotional fodder, including the excellent “Monty’s Christmas,” which went on to earn double Grand Prix at Cannes (in 2014 for Film Craft and then in 2016 in Creative Effectiveness).

Original Story

Dougal Wilson returns for John Lewis' 2011 Christmas campaign with the story of a child who just can't wait for Christmas—but for reasons you may not realize. The pace of the spot recreates that childhood emotion of feeling like that day simply will never come —and the relief you feel when it finally does. The music is a reworking of The Smiths' "Please, Please, Please," and agency is Adam & Eve. 


Nov 14, 2011
Brand :
John Lewis
Client :
John Lewis
Agency :
Adam & Eve/DDB
Agency Producer :
Matt Craigie
Creative Director :
Ben Priest
Creative Director :
Emer Stamp
Creative Director :
Ben Tollett
Creative :
Matt Gay
Creative :
John Long
Production Company :
Director :
Dougal Wilson
Executive Producer :
James Bland
Producer :
Ben Link
Director, Photography :
Lasse Frank
Production Design :
Andy Kelly
Costumes :
Michelle May
Editor :
Joe Guest
Editing House :
Final Cut
Post Production :
Moving Picture Company
Music :
Major Tom
Sound Director :
Factory Sound

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