The Holidays Are a Scream for StubHub’s Talking Tree

Adding to the chaos of the season

If a tree falls in the forest, and it's StubHub's talking ticket tree, I hope I'm not there to hear it, because the unholy wailing sound it makes will shatter your nerves but good! I've had a love/hate relationship with Duncan/Channon's animatronic oak since it debuted last spring. But the holiday-themed "Screaming Tree" spot is just lame noise. When doofus sidekick Ben brings home a sack containing a Christmas tree, the decibels soar as the Ticket Oak mourns its piney cousin. Ben joins in, screeching that the new arrival was already dead when he bought it. There was a certain goofy/menacing edge to the StubHub tree in its previous appearances, but here there's no tension, brand message or even a fully developed concept. Besides, the bar for scream-driven marketing was set by Walmart's infamous clown spot, and "Screaming Tree," though 25 feet tall, doesn't begin to scale those heights of sublimely annoying lunacy. Overall, this is a sour note in the nonstop din of seasonal campaigns. I wish Ben had a chainsaw in his sack. Turn that tree into yule logs! Credits after the jump.


Client: StubHub

Head of Brand and Creative: Michael Lattig

Offline Marketing Manager: Jen Millet

Agency: Duncan/Channon

Executive Creative Director, Copywriter: Parker Channon

Associate Creative Director, Art Director: Ken Hall

Executive Producer: Christine Gomez

Account Director: Eric Dunn

Account Supervisor: Jenn Gbur


Production Company: Biscuit Filmworks

Director: Mike Maguire

Managing Director: Shawn Lacy

Executive Producer: Colleen O’Donnell

Producer: Laure Stevens

Director of Photography: Ulrik Boel Bentzen


Editing Company: Final Cut

Editor: Matt Murphy

Assistant: Scott Butzer

Executive Producer: Saima Awan

Producer: Suzy Ramirez

Post Effects

Production Effects Company: MPC

Managing Director: Andrew Bell

Producer: Nicole Fina

Lead 2-D Artist, Smoke: Mark Holden

Senior Colorist, U.S. Creative Director: Mark Gethin

Telecine Producer: Amanda Ornelas


Sound Mix: Lime Studios

Engineer: Loren Silber


Animatronic Tree: Anatomorphex

Owner, Fabricator: Robert Devine

@DaveGian David Gianatasio is a longtime contributor to Adweek, where he has been a writer and editor for two decades. Previously serving as Adweek's New England bureau chief and web editor, he remains based in Boston.