Disney’s Christmas advert is ‘the happy ending everybody wants to see’ – singer

A grandmother connects with her granddaughter through their family traditions and a Mickey Mouse doll in Disney’s 2020 Christmas advert.

The animation short, which marks the company’s 40-year partnership with children’s charity Make-A-Wish, features music from 19-year-old British musician Griff.

The singer-songwriter, originally from Kings Langley, Hertfordshire, described the advert as “the happy ending everybody wants to see” while families remain apart due to Covid-19.

Ivor Novello Awards 2020
Griff (The Ivors Academy with Apple Music/PA)

Disney’s festive commercial introduces two new characters – a grandmother, Lola, and her granddaughter.

A Mickey Mouse toy gifted to Lola as a young child by her father in 1940 comes to symbolise her present day relationship with her granddaughter.

The advert is sound-tracked by Griff’s performance of Love Is A Compass, written by songwriting and production team PARKWILD, which is being released as a charity single.

Ivor Novello Rising Star nominee Griff told the PA news agency: “It’s the happy ending everybody wants to see.

“Right now at this time it feels very timely and people are going to watch it and crave to be together and want to be together. Definitely when I was watching it.

“It’s so important to give a message of hope and realise that we will all reconnect at some point. When I watched it I just loved it.”

Griff, who has both Jamaican and Chinese heritage, said she had connected to the theme of family and tradition.

(Disney/PA)

She said: “When I watched it in its finished form, and hearing the director talking about what the story is about, talking about Lola the grandmother and her granddaughter.

“For me it really resonated with me and my mum. We are going through that time now.

“There is that bit in the ad where they grow up and the granddaughter goes away and I feel that’s the tension I am facing now.

“My mum is not from the UK and I am this Western daughter who is growing up in a very Western world.

“But times like Christmas are times when you can just come together and share those moments. It definitely made me think of my mum.”

Tasia Filippatos, senior vice president of Disney EMEA, said: “Christmas is a time for giving and giving back, and we’re delighted to debut this festive ad campaign supporting our long-term charity partner Make-A-Wish. Our goal was to tell a universal story that inspires through the themes of family, love and special holiday traditions. We hope that Disney fans enjoy the short.”

Luciano Manzo, president and chief executive of Make-A-Wish International, said: “Our 40-year partnership with Disney has already helped grant so many wishes for children across the world and we’re really excited to be part of this Christmas campaign.

“The festive season is such a meaningful time for so many families to celebrate special memories, and it’s wonderful to have the opportunity to grant even more life-changing wishes with Disney’s support. We hope audiences love the animated short and get involved.”

The Mickey Mouse doll from the advert is available to buy online with money going to Make-A-Wish organisations, which help fulfil the wishes of children with critical illnesses.

Disney is encouraging fans to head to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to share their own festive memories using #LoveFromDisney.

Love Is A Compass will also be available from November 9 with all proceeds from the retail price donated to Make-A-Wish on every download before December 31.

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