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Sunday, 3 December 2017

BBC One Christmas - The Supporting Act

The BBC has just released its latest tranche of Christmas idents to coincide with the start of advent.

A short animated film called The Supporting Act has been created to mark the occasion. It features a 10 year old girl preparing for the school Christmas talent show, in which she'll be performing a dance routine to Symphony, by Clean Bandit featuring Zara Larsson.

Her busy father is always in the background, but is seemingly preoccupied with more important grown-up stuff and never seems to notice the girl's enthusiastic dance rehearsals. The night of the talent show arrives and the girl suffers from a last minute bout of stage fright, but luckily her father is there to help her pull it out of the bag.

Charlotte Moore, BBC Director of Content says: "Christmas is a time when people come together to enjoy shared experiences, and special moments. We wanted to reflect that in our Christmas campaign this year and we hope this film will touch hearts and make you smile over the festive period."

The two minute film was put together with award-winning director Elliot Dear, whose previous work included John Lewis's 2013 festive ad, The Bear and the Hare. Several festive idents were created featuring the same characters.

Ignoring the BBC connection for a moment, I have to say that I quite like the seamless way the video has been put together. The animation and music blend well together and I can see how it fits with BBC One's current Oneness theme. Others are more critical, hitting out at a lack of Christmassy-ness (if that's even a word), the absence of any traditional Christian message and a clear pandering to the PC brigade by featuring an Asian single father and daughter combination.

The BBC has refused to say how much The Supporting Act cost to produce, but The Bear and the Hare is known to have cost around £1 million. Licence-fee payers will be rightly enraged if the latest animation costs anywhere near that amount, at a time the BBC's pleas of poverty are louder than ever.

A BBC spokesman said: "The film has already had an incredibly positive reaction from our audiences and has been shared many thousands of times online.

"The film celebrates the joy to be found in sharing special moments with loved ones at Christmas - a sentiment which has resonated with our audience."

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