W+K Amsterdam, ‘Amelie’ Director Craft a Time Machine in Milka Christmas Campaign

By Erik Oster 

W+K Amsterdam launched a whimsical Christmas spot for Mondelez chocolate brand Milka entitled “The Time Machine.”

It opens on a young boy who eats the first chocolate on an advent calendar and is disheartened with how long he has to wait until Christmas eve. So he goes around his mountain village, collecting a variety of objects and assembling them into what he believes is a time machine, setting the date for the 24th. His family, aware of what he’s up to, has a surprise in store for him.

“The Time Machine” picks up on the whimsical, Alps-themed approach W+K employed in its “Tenderness Is Inside” spot introducing the brand in China. It’s also sort of a cute premise, but after family scrambles to set everything up for Christmas to convince the boy his time machine worked, do they do whole thing all over again when it’s actually Christmas eve? Do they tell him? Does he figure things out when no one else is celebrating New Year’s Eve seven days later?

The spot was shot by French director Jean-Pierre Jeunet (The City of Lost Children, Amelie), who brings his distinctive style to the effort.


“I have to say the story is perfectly tailored; a Christmas tale rich in atmosphere, a little boy with a gift for inventing things, a surreal machine, and emotion. Basically everything I am fond of,” Jeunet said in a statement. “Collaborating with Milka and W+K Amsterdam has been a real pleasure, and I think it’s palpable through the film. It’s actually one of my favourite ads I’ve ever made.

“The Time Machine” launches a pan-European holiday campaign for the brand and will air in 13 markets across Europe, including Germany, France, Austria and Poland, supported by digital and social initiatives.

“We hope our little story will warm people’s hearts, and reminds them that they don’t have to wait for December 24th to experience some of that Christmas feeling with their loved ones,” W+K Amsterdam creative directors Daniel Schaefer and Szymon Rose said. “We are so happy we could work with Jean-Pierre Jeunet on this campaign. His incredible eye for the whimsical magic was perfect to bring our Milka world to life.”

Client: Mondelez
VP, Marketing Communication and Brand Equity: Phillip Chapman
Marketing Director, Chocolate: Celine Berg
Marketing Manager, Chocolate: Martha Miralles
Global Milka Equity Director: Karine Chik
Global Milka Equity Manager: Chiara Missio
Milka Seasonal Activation Manager MEU: Beata Kucejko-Pelka

Agency: W+K Amsterdam
Executive Creative Director: Mark Bernath, Eric Quennoy
Creative Director: Szymon Rose, Daniel Schaefer
Art Director: Victor Monclus, Jeff Lam
Copywriter: Will Lowe, David Neevel
Head of Broadcast Production: Joe Togneri
Broadcast Producer: Samantha Cox, Soey Lim
Planner: Nusara Chinnaphasaen
Communications Planner: Wes Young
Group Account Director: Clare Pickens
Account Director: Will Oakes
Account Manager: Nick Pirtle
Project Manager: Katie Finn
Business Affairs: Emilie Douque

Production Company: Tobago Films Paris
Director: Jean–Pierre Jeunet
Director of Photography: Thomas Hardmeier
Producer: Olivier Thaon, Nicolas Maman
Executive Producer: Michèle Arnould

Editing Company: McMurphy, Paris
Editor: Maryline Monthieux

Audio Post: Wave Studios, London
Sound Designer/Mixer: Aaron Reynolds

Composer: Phil Kay
Music Company: Woodwork Music

Post-Production: McMurphy, Paris
Flame: Bruno Maillard, Christophe Croidieu, Tristan Barbaron
3D: Guillaume Nadaud, Thomas Lefebre, Charles Blanchard
Colorist: Didier Le Fouest
Producer: Alexandre Boiron, Sébastien Gros