Ahead of the holidays, the youth-led anti-gun violence movement March for Our Lives is sending out another reminder of the dangers faced by children in U.S. schools, this time with a jarring holiday theme.
In a 30-second video, the clinking of falling shell casings plays out the the notes of the well-known tune of holiday favorite “Carol of the Bells,"next to children’s bags and coats, along with paper snowflakes. The film ends with the statement “The greatest gift we can give our children is action.”
DDB agency Rodgers Townsend created the ad, which came together in a matter of weeks, according to the St. Louis agency. March for Our Lives also partnered with L.A.-based director Nate Townsend.
“Good ideas must be acted upon. But this one, in particular, loses its power by January,” said Mike McCormick, chief creative officer at Rodgers Townsend, in a statement. “I have 8-year-old daughters. And more than ever, what I wish I could give them isn’t under the Christmas tree. It’s freedom from fear, intruder drills and assault weapons.”
“If haunting can be magical, if tragic can be beautiful, that’s what we were going for,” added McCormick. “There’s no humanity or graphic detail, yet you feel the slow-motion terror of the moment.”
March for Our Lives began over four years ago following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. The organization has led hundreds of worldwide marches and hosted voter registration events with aims of increasing voter turnout.
Earlier this year, it marked the fourth anniversary of the initial march with a campaign in which it sent an unmissable message to U.S. leaders—a series of body bags spelling out the words “thoughts and prayers” in front of the U.S. Capitol. The project is one of the top 30 creative moves of the year as ranked by Ad Age. It has also released a short film addressing the tragedy at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.