Quick Takes 8/31/07: Trailer Round-Up

I’m not sure if this trailer for Trade, about the international sex slave trade starring Kevin Kline, is new or if it’s the same one I watched a while ago, but it’s great and deserving of a look either for the first time or again.

The trailer for Great World of Sound is quite funny as it skewers the “get famous and spruce up your life” entertainment phenomenon.

You absolutely need to watch this trailer for Quiet City, about a young girl who’s lost in New York and the guy she bumps into and the connection that forms between them.

This trailer the The Mist, an adaptation of a Stephen King book, is pretty good right up until the time the guy is trying to beat the miniature flying dinosaur thing with a broom handle.

It might be possible for this trailer for One Missed Call to look sillier but I’m not sure how.

Department of Totally Related Events

Everyone knows that the announcement of Hulu as the name for the NBC/News Corp video outlet, an outlet devoted to the TV and movie content from those two media companies, and NBC Universal’s decision to pull their TV episodes from iTunes at the end of December are completely related, right?

Just want to make sure.

Quick Takes 8/30/07

  • filmstrip.jpgThe fall movie season is well stocked with familiar faces even if the movies themselves are a little more hardcore and in some cases obscure. That makes it easy for marketers and if you look at some of the movies on the list you’ll remember the posters almost universally feature the actors in question.
  • Somehow this New York Times article on the power of sequels manages to position Rush Hour 3 as the salve for our national worries. There’s a better story in there about how sequels have to be both familiar and new in order to succeed, but I’m having trouble moving past that point.
  • Ascent Media is partnering with a few studios to create new opportunities for the repurposing of movie content for mobile, online and other digital executions.
  • Warner Premiere, the division charged with creating short-form entertainment for cross-media distribution, has snatched one of the JibJab guys to become the new director of digital development.
  • Oscar Raymundo at Fast Company points out that it was the strength of mid-tier films like those from director/producer Judd Apatow that helped keep Hollywood from a third-straight disappointing box-office year. The big hits would not have been enough, they needed support from the smaller players on the field.

LOTD: 8/31/07

  • Linden Labs has introduced age verification to parts of Second Life in order to make sure under-age residents aren’t getting into places they shouldn’t. You’d think, from some of the reactions I’ve seen, that they had just said everyone must have a human-looking avatar. Settle down, everyone. (CT)
  • Fast Company has a good read on how the internet allows for personal branding, something that I’m all about since every opportunity I’ve gotten in the last two years has been a result of the online brand I’ve built around myself. (CT)

Larry Craig would, in this example, be the Cop

Quote of the Day via C&L:

When conservatives gush about how macho Fred Thompson and President Bush are, we do sound a little bit like Village People fans.

Things that occur to me while walking to the train

If I turn 40 and feel the need to buy something fancy for my virtual avatar, am I having a Second Life crisis?

Innovative marketing pays off for movies

brandweek1.JPGMy latest column is up over at Brandweek. This one is just kind of a fun piece where I talk about how some of the mid-tier films of the summer were able to achieve success with marketing efforts that didn’t just included MySpace pages and massive TV ad buys. These are movies that, for the most part, did not have familiar characters and huge franchising opportunities to fall back on and so had to carve out brand identities (there’s that concept again) for themselves in order to compete against the big boys of the summer. Check it out if you like. Continue reading

Owen Wilson and the marketing of Darjeeling Limited

darjeelingpic1.jpgThere have been a number of stories written in the last few days about Owen Wilson and how the rough times he’s going through personally are affecting the movie’s that are either coming out shortly or had planned to have a role in. I was asked for my thoughts on this issue, specifically as it relates to the marketing of The Darjeeling Limited, for a piece in Newsweek and you can read that story, complete with a quote from me, right here.

The quote that was selected was probably the best one I made in the 20 minutes or so the writer and I chatted. The larger point is that Wilson is very much tied with director Wes Anderson in terms of press coverage and fan perception. The two – along with brother Luke Wilson – have become known as such a team that what happens to one of them has ripple effects on the others. That’s what I mean when I say the removal of Wilson from the publicity mix can impact the “brand identity” of the movie. He and Anderson make up the movie’s brand image and play integral parts in its perpetuation.

I fully acknowledge that it’s a little crass to be talking about such matters when someone is going through something obviously serious. We may not know yet what the real problem is but I hope that Wilson is given the opportunity to heal both his body and his soul in the weeks and months ahead. But the reality of the situation is that he’s got movies that he was/is expected to promote and that’s going to be an issue.

LOTD: 8/30/07

  • Okay, I’ve been sitting on this one for weeks, but who else thinks it’s absolutely wacky that there’s actually a formal name for the fact that people text up a storm when they can’t smoke, like what’s gone on in the UK? I mean, “smexting?” (TB)
  • All right, all right, I’m cleaning out my RSS closet. I’ve gotta say – and I don’t live near LA at all – this entry from Thrillist LA last Friday has got to be one of the most useful looking things I’ve seen in a really long time. I mean, serious no-brainer, right? You could *totally* make this a Web 2.0 function somewhere. VC’s I’m looking for you! (TB)

LOTD: 8/29/07

  • A few months ago, my pal David noted that you couldn’t post “get crazy with the cheez whiz” on Twitter. He was right, you sure couldn’t. Turns out you still can’t. At least on its own. Combine it with other words and it works. But for some reason, Twitter doesn’t like that particular Beck lyric. Anyone else find things that Twitter gobbles up and spit back out? (TB)
  • DailyCandy is opening the doors to five Kids Local editions as of September 17. Folks in New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles and Boston can get all the details they need to know about what’s hot (or not) for the little tykes. (TB)
  • Finally, a “2.0” moniker that doesn’t make me want to poke out my eyes, Lunch 2.0. (TB)
  • Ian Schafer has what I think is the best write-up of the newly announced Hulu.com (the joint NBC/News Corp. venture that’s been “unnamed video site” for six months) if for no other reason than the line, “Anywho(lu).” (CT)