Home Culture Film Plagiarism claim for John Lewis’ festive advert
Plagiarism claim for John Lewis’ festive advert

Plagiarism claim for John Lewis’ festive advert


Pic: John Lewis Press Association 

An award-winning illustrator and writer of children’s books has claimed that John Lewis has plagiarised one of his famous stories in this years coveted Christmas advert, George Timberlake reports

Author, Chris Riddle, constructed his own version of the advert and posted it on his social media. The likeness comes under his book of “Mr Underbed”, which consist of a large fury monster that lives under a bed, that also happens to be blue, snore loudly and rocks the bed. All the attributes the same as John Lewis’ Moz the monster.

In a tweet that Riddle posted saying “John Lewis help themselves to my picture book.” He attaches a video of himself going through the children’s picture book, with the famous advert playing in the background, which was launched last week.

The main character Moz was created by John Lewis’s agency Adam&Eve. The whole campaign is estimated to have set back the company a massive £7m. Oscar award winning writer Michel Gondry, made this years advert which has now been described as a media highlight of the year. Elbow have re-recorded the Beatles classic Golden Slumbers for the soundtrack to this years advert.

However this isn’t the first time John Lewis has faced reports that their advert has been inspired by another’s work. Back in 2014, the Monty the Penguin advert was likened to Oliver Jeffers’ 2005 children’s bestseller Lost and Found. John Lewis denied claims and stated “stories about penguins at Christmas time are not new, and the story in our advert is totally unique”.

On this years festive advert a John Lewis spokesperson said: “The story of a big hairy monster under the bed which keeps a child from sleeping is a universal tale which has been told many times over many years. Ours is a Christmas story of friendship and fun between Joe and Moz The Monster, in which Joe receives a night light which helps him get a good night’s sleep. The main thrust of our story is utterly different to Chris Riddell’s.”

George Timberlake I am a second year Journalism student. I love all aspects of journalism, but I specifically have a passion for broadcasting.