Sladedale Road in Cadbury's Christmas advert
Date posted: 01.12.2013
Cadbury's first ever Christmas campaign has certainly got the company off to a jubilant start. Children wake up on Christmas morning to find their street wrapped up in Cadbury's iconic purple paper. Full of excitable Christmas spirit, they jump out of bed to unwrap the street - before being showered with Cadbury's confetti and chocolate.
To realise the vision, the Location Manager, Eugene Strange from Salt Film was tasked with finding a nondescript street on a hill with distant views of other neighbourhoods and towns. He contacted Film London back in July and the team engaged in extensive searches, sending through over 50 location options for this brief.
Eventually, Sladedale Road in the Royal Borough of Greenwich proved to be a sound choice. As Strange explained:
"We felt the steep slopes and it not being an obviously London setting made it an interesting choice."
Directed by Kim Gehrig and produced by Somesuch & Co, the set for the advert required extensive planning for the five day preparation and three day shoot. With assistance and guidance from the Greenwich Film Unit, the production achieved:
- Full road closure
- Traffic management
- Turning off street lights
- Licenses for cranes/cherry pickers and unit base
- Dressed the street, including the complete wrapping of 20 homes
Excellent communication between the Greenwich Film Unit, the production team and the residents was invaluable in successfully coordinating the shoot.
Strange says, "This location would have been immediately unworkable if the residents didn't want to be involved, but we had fortunately chosen a street with an extremely co-operative and interested group of people."
Working with the residents
Cooperation with the residents was essential. Luckily for the production, the concept proved to be popular, and residents received it with much enthusiasm. Children living in the area were given the opportunity to appear as extras on the commercial and residents were able to observe the filming.
Suzanne Hutchinson at the Greenwich Film Office says "there was a very jovial atmosphere on set with residents eating chocolate while watching filming taking place!"
As well as receiving payment for use of their properties, residents were also presented with wine and Cadbury's chocolates. Additionally, in keeping with the Christmas spirit, the production made a charity donation to the local children's hospice.
Making the Cadbury's commercial 'Unwrap Joy' was certainly a unique and memorable experience for all involved.
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