Anna Kendrick Gets Stuck, Santa Gets Busted: The Top 5 Ads Of The Week

Nike takes on winter, Jurassic World goes corporate, SickKids Hospital makes 42 ads in 42 days, and more.

Anna Kendrick Gets Stuck, Santa Gets Busted: The Top 5 Ads Of The Week

There’s nothing like a kid with cancer to put your own daily problems in perspective. The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, also known as SickKids, is a major centre of paediatric care in North America. In a new holiday fundraising campaign, with agency JWT Canada, the hospital is using patient stories to convey the scope and scale of its operations.


From early November to December 22, the campaign is rolling out 42 individual ads–one for each day–starring real patients ranging from four-days to 18-years-old, many in active treatment for conditions like cystic fibrosis, various childhood cancers and organ transplants. It’s both heartbreaking and heartwarming, the sheer number of stories perfectly conveys the gravity of the hospital’s year-round responsibilities, and is enough to make anyone complaining about an early winter cold snap.

Read more about that campaign and the rest of our picks for this week’s best in brand creativity.

Nike “Choose Your Winter”

What: The Swoosh takes away any excuses to avoid outdoor exercise and sports during these cold, cold months.
Who: Nike, Wieden+Kennedy Portland
Why We Care: This spot has all the hallmarks of the classic motivational Nike spot, starring star athletes like NFLers Aaron Rodgers and Jordy Nelson, Team USA soccer stars Clint Dempsey and Brad Evans, distance runner Mary Cain, figure skater Gracie Gold, and snowboarder Johnnie Paxson, but with the added charm of Chris O’Dowd as an overly cautious weatherman.


Kate Spade “The Waiting Game”

What: A charming spot starring Anna Kendrick killing time while locked out of her apartment after a holiday shopping spree.
Who: Kate Spade, director Michael Mohan
Why We Care: It’s tough to go wrong with Kendrick’s seemingly endless charm. This spot expertly uses it to the brand’s advantage while avoiding a wrong turn into holiday schmaltz.

Universal Studios “Masrani Global”

What: A fake corporate site for the firm that acquired InGen Corporation, the bioengineering startup founded by John Hammond from the original Jurassic Park movie.
Who: Universal Studios
Why We Care: While we may be starting to get used to this, thanks to Prometheus and X-Men, using digital to bring a film to life in the real world–when done well–is still a very welcome gimmick for fanboys and the yet-to-be converted.

The Hospital for Sick Children “Better Tomorrows”

What: A collection of 42 ads in 42 days featuring real patient stories.
Who: The Hospital for Sick Children, JWT Canada
Why We Care: You’d have a heart of coal if these didn’t get you in some way. Some might say sick kids are an easy sell, but it’s the collective effect so many stories illustrates an even larger point about the scope of the hospital’s duties, giving the campaign even more weight.


Poo-Pourri “Even Santa Poops”

What: Santa gets busted leaving some unwelcome gifts.
Who: Poo-Pourri
Why We Care: Will the sight of Santa dropping yule logs down the porcelain chimney scar your children forever? Maybe. But watching the jolly old elf try to talk his way out of becoming the “ghost of Christmas ass” is a crudely hilarious way to sell bathroom deodorizer this time of year.

About the author

Jeff Beer is a staff editor at Fast Company, covering advertising, marketing, and brand creativity.