Amazon MGM Studios sought to introduce Candy Cane Lane, a new Christmas classic starring Eddie Murphy, to audiences entering the Christmas season.
Filled with heartwarming moments, hilarious comedy, and a dollop of mayhem—like other perennial Christmas classics—the imaginative cross-genre film also plays with the trappings of Christmas in a way that's a unique match for social AR.
To bring the holiday fun to augmented reality, two of those unique elements from the film were chosen for focus: the town villagers, played by Nick Offerman, Robin Thede, and Chris Redd, and the famed acapella group Pentatonix, who hilariously interrupt the action by singing Christmas carols throughout the film.
In an execution ported to multiple platforms, users were transformed into three villagers built from ILM production assets used in the film. As snow softly flutters and bells lightly jingle, users' backgrounds are transformed into immersive 360° panoramas of the enchanting Kringle holiday shop from the film, created from on-location captures at the film set.
To incorporate the studio's marketing objective to evoke a Christmas wish gone awry, we brought in Pentatonix as the carolers in a comically maddening way.
For the musically-driven TikTok platform, every time the user opens their mouth to say something, the vocal group—who were turned into Christmas ornaments by the film's antagonist—pop up on the screen to interrupt with a special version of “Deck the Halls.”
As on the other platforms where users appear as Christmas villagers, the Pentatonix version of “Deck The Halls” is the only sound that can be expressed, no matter how hard the user tries otherwise!
As on the other platforms where users appear as Christmas villagers, this version of “Deck The Halls” is the only sound that can be expressed, no matter how hard the user tries otherwise!
Where possible, lenses linked back to the immersive Candy Cane Lane Experience on Amazon.com, allowing users to actually shop for some of the many treasures available at the Kringles holiday shop from the film.
When they finish shopping, they could click back to the lens from the shopping microsite, creating a connected and very Christmas-y Candy Cane Lane digital mini-universe.
With its bright colors, sounds, unique and colorful style, and unexpected surprises, the lens gathered over a hundred and fifty-thousand interactions in its first weeks and was still going strong into the Christmas holiday. With a benchmark-beating share rate of over 12%, fans were spreading the cheer all over their social networks.