Greenpeace released a film online today, aiming to highlight LEGO's collusion in the threat to the Arctic by promoting the controversial Shell brand on its toys. Shell is under pressure from regulators and NGOs over its plans to drill in the Arctic, which threatens the people and unique wildlife that live there.
The haunting and beautifully shot video, made by BAFTA-winning creative agency Don't Panic, begins by revealing a magical and playful Arctic wonderland made of LEGO. But as the scene pans out, it's revealed Shell has moved in to drill – and something has gone wrong. An evocative cover version of the theme song from The LEGO Movie,'Everything is Awesome', accompanies the destruction.
Watch the video, titled LEGO: Everything is NOT awesome
Mel Evans, Arctic Campaigner at Greenpeace, said: "Every company has a responsibility to choose its partners and suppliers ethically. LEGO says it wants to leave a better world for children, yet it's partnered with Shell, one of the biggest climate polluters on the planet, now threatening the pristine Arctic. That's a terrible decision and its bad news for kids.We're calling on LEGO to stand up for the Arctic, and for children, by ditching Shell for good."
Don't Panic's Creative Director, Richard Beer, said: "We love LEGO. Most of us spent hours as children letting our imaginations run wild with just a few bricks and a couple of odd-shaped things that looked like spaceship engines. That's why it's so sad to see LEGO being used by Shell to advertise to children like this. We hope our video strikes a chord. We hope it captures the sadness we all feel that one of our fondest childhood icons is now being used to pollute children's imaginations."
The campaign targeting LEGO's deal with Shell launched on Tuesday 1 July, and already has more than 240,000 petition signatures. Thousands of fans have flooded LEGO's Facebook and twitter pages urging them to stop lending support to oil major Shell.
LEGO responded to the campaign by posting a statement online from Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, President and Chief Executive Officer of the LEGO Group.
He justified LEGO's partnership with Shell as a way of putting "LEGO bricks into the hands of more children" and that LEGO "expect(s) that Shell lives upto their responsibilities wherever they operate". He said LEGO "intend(s) to live up to the long term contract with Shell".
Greenpeace responded with a statement on its website shortly after. It asked, "does the world's most profitable toy company have to put aside its stated values in order to increase its sales? Would LEGO partner with a cigarette company to help bring its bricks to the masses?"
Greenpeace explained LEGO's deal with Shell generates kudos and tacit support from millions of people for Shell's operations. The statement goes onto outline a cacophony of Shell's environmental wrongs, in the Arctic, and across the whole planet.
Notes to editors:
Contact: Ellen Booth, email@example.com +44(0)7807 352020
See the petition page for the campaign for Lego to drop Shell at:
About Don't Panic:
Greenpeace is only the latest charity to use Don't Panic for digital campaign work. The agency were recently awarded a Gold Cyber Lion at Cannes for their 'Most Shocking Second A Day' video for Save The Children which has, to date, been viewed almost 32 million times on YouTube.