Skip to main content

Showing John Lewis how it’s done – how HGA filmmaker created Hafod Hardware’s viral ad

We are so proud of HGA’s Video Producer Josh Holdaway – the filmmaker behind the Hafod Hardware viral Christmas advert that’s had over 2.2 million views and counting…

This smart, simple and beautifully made film has captured hearts all over the world with stories across the UK press as well as in the New York Times and TIME magazine.

Melting Icy Hearts Across the Internet.. a front-runner for best commercial of the holiday season.

TIME magazine

Josh teamed up with best friend Thomas Lewis Jones, the owner of Hafod Hardware, to create the film as a fun side project to celebrate the Christmas spirit within the community of Rhayader, Mid-Wales, where they both grew up. Together they crafted the concept idea of #BeAKidThisChristmas inspired by Tom’s 2-year-old son, and star of the show, Arthur.

“The concept for the film came about very organically” says Josh “We shot and edited the whole thing in one day. It’s simple video for a simple idea that was all about human connection, which is what’s Hafod Hardware is all about.”

Josh also cameos as a customer

Tom told the Guardian “I think it has struck a chord because it’s such a simple message. It’s real and it’s not saying: ‘Spend, spend, spend.’ I think you can tell it’s made by people who care about this business.” The hardware shop has been in Rhayader since 1895 and has been run by Tom’s family for decades. “People have been coming in saying congratulations… The locals are incredible, they’re our bread and butter, we’re very lucky to have the community we have here in Rhayader.”

Josh shot and edited the film as a favour for this best friend and his family’s shop. £100 was spent hiring a studio for friend Andrea von Kampen to record a beautiful cover of ‘Forever Young’ by Alphaville, which is now climbing the charts, gaining popularity for its sweet and charming melody.

The shoot wasn’t without it’s challenges as they had to patiently capture each shot with adorable Arthur without tiring the toddler out with tricky re-takes. The ideas and the flow of the filming process came naturally to Josh, Tom and Arthur thanks to the enjoyment of collaboration in a fun and simple film project.

“It was a great day with my friends – we could never have anticipated the reception it’s had.” said Josh.

HGA’s MD Dan Laurence commented: “We are so proud of our Josh for his part in creating this film which is winning people over all across the globe. The purity of concept and the storytelling are perfect examples of his talent. It certainly shows the big-budget retailers a thing or two and how not to overthink things!”

Okay, this makes me want to get on a plane, fly to Wales, go to this store and buy a Bodem—just so this adorable child can wrap it for me.

Youtube viewer Jen M
Looking for help with your communications?

HGA Group Services