A last-minute reunion dinner is an act of true love in Leo Burnett's CNY film for AIA Malaysia

AIA Malaysia.jpgIf you don't look forward to travelling home for the holidays, then Leo Burnett's Chinese New Year spot for AIA may give you a different perspective on things.

In the film, an elderly husband corrals his adult children together for an unexpected family reunion dinner on Chinese New Year's Eve - all at the behest of his beloved wife. Everything seems normal enough until the story's twist; a reveal that provides a very different take on the events of the film.

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"We wanted to tell a simple story," said Iska Hashim, Group Creative Director of Leo Burnett. "One that would ring true for people. But it was a delicate balance to get right. Not too light, but not too heavy or depressing, either." Indeed, copywriter Pia Dhaliwal's script navigated the twist of the story with deftness, drawing on the real life experiences of art director Lee Shyyi as well as Account Director Cheng Ie-Tsen. "I think Pia and Shyyi developed a wonderful story that will resonate emotionally with many," added Hashim.

AIA Malaysia3.jpgAIA Malaysia4.jpgAIA Malaysia5.jpgIt was this truth in the storytelling that appealed to AIA. "We were deeply moved by the richness of the narrative when it was first presented to us. There are so many truths in this seemingly simple yet heartwarming story of a man and his wife - the joy of having those you love by your side, and being there for them no matter what," explains Eric Chang, Chief Marketing Officer of AIA Bhd.

A real man and his wife, no less. Director Maurice Noone, of production house Think Tank, found an endearing married couple to play the roles of the elderly husband and wife.

"All the wedding and family photos you see of the couple in the film are their actual photos," Chang said. "By focusing on details like that, Maurice ensured the kind of depth and authenticity in the storytelling that stays true to our brand. He has definitely brought it home for AIA."

"We're thrilled to present this film as we usher in Chinese New Year. The release is made even more special because this is also the year that AIA celebrates 70 years of being by Malaysians' side, protecting what is most important to them, and helping them live healthier, longer and better," adds Chang.

Credits - Group Creative Director: Iska Hashim. Copywriter: Pia Dhaliwal. Art Director: Lee Shyyi. Vernacular Copywriters: Poon See Hian, Lee Pei Sien. Account Director: Cheng Ie-Tsen. Account Executive: Lionel Poore. Agency Producer: Melanie Ranatunga. Project Manager: Elizabeth Anita. Production House: Think Tank. Director: Maurice Noone. Line Producer: De Shen. Director of Photography: Julian Oh. 2nd Unit: Tek Nam. Editor: Affandi Jamaluddin. Post-Production: VHQ Post KL. Music: Real Time Studios Sdn Bhd. Client: AIA Bhd. Chief Marketing Officer: Eric Chang. Head, Corporate Comms: Chen Mei Ling. Senior Brand Manager: Jason Ng. Brand Managers: Choy May Yee. Kristen San, Ker Tze Hwee.

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