CBS’ 2017 on-air holiday campaign, which debuted on Thanksgiving Day and continues through the end of December, is an homage to the Network’s charming hand-drawn animated holiday greeting in 1966.
The vintage spot, in which birds halt their carefree tweeting until a saw-wielding man demonstrates that he’s been touched by the holiday spirit, was designed by renowned illustrator/animator R.O. Blechman (The New Yorker, “The Soldier’s Tale,” “Sesame Street“) and brought to life by famed animator Willis Pyle (“Pinocchio,” “Bambi,” “Mr. Magoo“).
The sweet and simple essence of the classic spot was recreated in several different hand-drawn animated spots in collaboration with the CBS Marketing Group (Executive Vice President Garen VandeBeek; Senior Vice President, On-Air Promotion, Lori Shefa; Vice President, On-Air Design Matt Hernandez; and Director, On-Air Promotion Valerie Dillingham), the Swedish design firm Brikk, and Anchor Point animation.
The new greetings include a group of birds in various birdhouses who each peek out long enough to perform their own part and pitch of “Jingle Bells”; a shivering squirrel who finds some warmth, figuratively and literally, from a resting bear and cub; a moose who is suddenly adorned in colorful ornaments thanks to a strong wind and a nearby Christmas tree; a bird on a roof who pecks on the one working bulb on a string of lights and causes them all to glow; and a snowman who is saved when a squirrel, rabbit, and raccoon create a pyramid to hold an umbrella high enough to shield him from the sun.
“Part of CBS’ longtime leadership in graphic design was our series of animated Holiday Greetings, dating back to the 1960s,” said George Schweitzer, President, CBS Marketing Group. “We thought it would be a good time to celebrate that past and take a step into the future. Our team has done a terrific job doing just that!”