Look Familiar? Universal Studios’ New Ad Borrows A Lot From Apple

You’ve most probably seen Apple’s tear-jerking “Misunderstood” Christmas commercial: an ad about a seemingly isolated teenager who spends the holidays with their face buried in their iPhone — only to reveal at the end that they’ve been using the device’s camera to create a touching tribute to family togetherness.

Well, it seems that someone from Universal Studios Orlando’s ad agency David&Goliath also watched it (or else this whole thing is an amazing coincidence) because the theme park’s new ad — embedded above — bears an uncanny resemblance to Apple’s much-lauded commercial.

Much like “Misunderstood”, the advert tells the story of an apparently surly teenager who spends Christmas her Universal Studios family vacation apparently ignoring everything that is happening in front of her in favor of her smartphone — with the final twist being that she then sends her dad a photo gallery of the holiday entitled “Best Vacation Ever.” (Because, you know, she was recording it the whole time!)

For those wishing to do the comparison, here is Apple’s Christmas commercial:

As reader Finin points out, the music used by Universal Studios is also fairly similar to the soundtrack to this Apple ad for the iPhone 5:

We guess it’s not so “misunderstood” when everyone’s doing it, eh?

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  • markymac

    There’s no need to be coy about saying Universal Studios “borrowed” from Apple’s commercial, it’s a complete and utter rip-off without one shred of originality.

    What makes it worse is while she says it’s the best vacation ever she’s spending it all taking, what appear to be, sneaky photos where she’s smiling and enjoying herself but every moment with her family appears to show her as a lonely introvert walking alongside an otherwise incredibly happy family.

    If this the best vacation ever I’d hate to see the worst.

  • markymac

    There’s no need to be coy about saying Universal Studios “borrowed” from Apple’s commercial, it’s a complete and utter rip-off without one shred of originality.

    What makes it worse is while she says it’s the best vacation ever she’s spending it all taking, what appear to be, sneaky photos where she’s smiling and enjoying herself but every moment with her family appears to show her as a lonely introvert walking alongside an otherwise incredibly happy family.

    If this the best vacation ever I’d hate to see the worst.

  • darylayala

    It’s was done to make you THINK it was another Apple commercial but they twisted it at the end so you got the message.

  • efforting

    The look on the fathers face is priceless. I would love to hear his inner dialog! He spent more time concerned and disappointed in his daughter than actually enjoying the vacation himself.

About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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