I wish I just felt a little more life coming from this campaign. It’s so focused on creating and sharing inspirational moments that there doesn’t seem to be anything else going on. There’s surely quite a story to be told here and some of that does come through but the marketing doesn’t go much beyond presenting the characters as archetypal cutouts that could be plugged in anywhere and achieve much the same result, regardless of story.
The whole campaign is pretty great, presenting a funny and emotional story of being the odd person out in a society that expects smooth edges and perfection. It’s great to see Steinfeld take a starring role like this and she’s front and center in the marketing, owning everyone else in the trailers and standing alone on the one-sheet. The fully-featured website, including a number of mobile elements, rounds out a well put-together campaign that, when combined with the positive word of mouth generated from festival screenings, hopefully adds up to some amount of success.
Despite that overt effort being made there is quite a lot to like in the campaign, even if there’s so little focus being put on the story. Instead it’s all about the spectacle and people are being pulled in to see all the magical craziness that’s on display. The story is secondary here to Scamander’s adventures and the cast of creatures that he’s after. On that front it works amazingly well and there seems to be some palpable anticipation for it, which means the campaign has worked.
There’s a ton of emotion in this campaign and it’s great to see. As with other movies from Lonergan, the focus is clearly on the relationships that are driving the story here. These are not shallow emotional waters we’re wading into, something that comes through in most every aspect of the marketing. The audience is expected to connect with all the characters, from Lee to Patrick to Randi, throughout the campaign.