Ad Classics: Disney – Magic Happens

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A 2001 TV commercial made for Disney is often shared among agency folks as a classic. The ad, part of the Magic Happens theme defies conventional story telling for brands in many ways. For starters, there is no real story with a problem setup and resolution through the brand. It is just about human interaction and how magical transformation happens between them through little gestures.

The viewer invariably breaks into a smile when the man breaks into a Ducky voice. The feeling at the end of the commercial is one of warmth, of positive feelings and a belief that magic does happen in our lives. The casting, acting and timing of dialogues is spot on. And in the context of several managers mistakenly equating strong ‘branding’ with the number of times a brand name is shown or mentioned, in this ad the brand name appears just once…that too, as a super. Yet it is so unmistakably Disney.

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