Three Perfect Surprise animated for Barnardos

Three Ireland has extended the Perfect Surprise, a Christmas commercial run in 2014 and 2015, into an animated campaign focused on giving. The campaign began in 2014 with the story of a young girl, Anna, whose Dad goes to the ends of the earth – quite literally – to bring her back the perfect surprise. A surprise that turns out to be her very own snow cloud. Two years later, the story has been turned into The Girl and the Cloud, an animated film and a beautifully illustrated children’s book. Proceeds from sales of the book are going to children’s charity, Barnardo’s. Advertising for the book is being presented across a multi-layered social campaign, press, print and activation.

The Girl and The Cloud - The Perfect Surprise


Rory Hamilton, ECD at Boys and Girls comments, “The creative idea came from a single thought – if a child got a snow cloud for Christmas, what would their year be like together? The story of the The Girl and The Cloud began quickly to take shape, becoming such a rich and magical tale that the team started to feel it couldn’t possibly all fit in a single commercial. So together with Three, Boys and Girls decided to execute the idea in a way that was completely unexpected – by writing and producing a children’s book.”

“Since the Perfect Surprise is sometimes one you give, not the one you get, we felt it was only right that all the proceeds from the sales of this book should go to Barnardo’s, which does so much to help children and their families in need at Christmas.” adds Patrick Stephenson, Business Director at Boys and Girls.

Elaine Carey, Chief Commercial Officer of Three commented on the partnership; “We are delighted to launch this campaign and partnership with Barnardos. The campaign really builds upon the emotive ‘perfect surprise’ narrative as we follow Anna and her cloud as their friendship grows through their shared adventures. With the focus on the gift of giving, we want to capture the essence of Christmas as it should be. One in nine children in Ireland now live in poverty and nearly two in five experience deprivation. Through sales of ‘The Girl and the Cloud’ book, Three hope to bring some Christmas magic into the lives of these children and their families this Christmas.”

Fergus Finlay, CEO of Barnardos commented; “At Barnardos we believe that every child deserves the same opportunities in life. Every child we meet in our work is full of potential and every fundraising partner we work with brings us one step closer to helping children in difficulty reach their full potential. Thanks to Three and this special book, we will be able to make Christmas a little brighter this year for many children and their families.”

The Girl and The Cloud - The Perfect Surprise Out Of Home
Three Ireland Facebook page - The Perfect Surprise
The Girl and The Cloud book - The Perfect Surprise
The Girl and The Cloud - The Perfect Surprise

Perfect Surprise Credits

The Perfect Surprise campaign was developed at Boys and Girls, Dublin, by executive creative director Rory Hamilton, head of art John Kilkenny, senior art director Dan Henson, senior copywriter Rachel Carey, agency producer Derek Doyle, business director Pat Stephenson, senior account director Caroline Keogh, account executive Shaunagh Farrelly, working with Three Ireland chief commercial officer and marketing director Elaine Carey, head of brand and marketing Aislinn O’Connor, marketing manager Rachel Cunningham, and campaign manager Stella Wilson.

Animation was produced at Studio AKA and Red Knuckles, London, by director Philip Hunt, producer Sharon Titmarsh, art directors and artists Amandine Pecharman and Olga Stern, lead CG artists Mario Ucci and Rick Thiele, lead animator Conor Ryan, animators Pascale Bories, Ning-En Chang, Fabiana Ciatti, Juliette Coutellier, Ines Pagniez, Tammy Smith, Paul Torris, lighting/compositing team Mario Ucci. Rick Thiele, Clementine Delcourt, Clarisse Valeix, modelling/texturing artist Francis-Xavier Martins (Polyjunky), rigging artist Laura Trout, editor Matt Dollings, artists Tristan Menard, Antoine Birot, Manddy Wyckens, Steve Small.

Sound was designed by Locky Butler. Original music was by Denis Kilty. Narrator is Ciaran Hinds.