Thursday, March 25, 2010

I Could Not Agree More With Roger Ebert

As a marketer, I am all about using creative strategies and tactics to get people to your product. But, entertainment – specifically film – marketing has taken a turn for the worse in recent years.

Things were looking so good too…

Just two years ago the marketing for Nine Inch Nails “Year Zero” album and the blockbuster “The Dark Knight” implemented alternate reality games for fan-boys and girls to nerd out on and get the buzz going.

The implementation of these campaigns was both astounding and epic. It seemed as though we were entering a renaissance of buzz generation. Unfortunately, this turned out to not be the case.

What went wrong?

Well, as we all know, Hollywood has less of an incentive to make a good product than a money-making one. Thus, when good films that were produced to be in immersive and beautiful 3D worlds (like Coraline and Avatar), it gave studios the impression that the increased success of these films must be attributed solely to the fact that were in 3D. Not because they were technological marvels of filmmaking.

Plus, there’s the fact that they can now charge a higher ticket price for the .03 cent plastic glasses that they need to hand out.

The return of 3D as a marketing device!

I might be the only person who remembers this movie and will still admit to seeing it in the theater but back in the 90s there was a Joe Dante movie called Matinee. Never heard of it? IMDB TIME! A huckster (John Goodman) introduces a small coastal town to a unique movie experience and capitalizes on the Cuban Missile crisis hysteria with a kitschy horror extravaganza combining film effects, stage props and actors in rubber suits in this salute to the B-movie.

The movie was nothing fantastic, but it showed how people could be lured to see a piece of junk movie when a few gimmicks are thrown into the mix, which is what Hollywood is doing to us now with all these 3D schlockfests.

So what can we do?

Nothing really. We’re going to have to wait until this craze fades away. Part of me was hoping that studios would say, “Gee Avatar was great and we’re never going to top it, so let’s do something else.” Of course, they’ve basically replicated the same thinking that’s destroyed any hopes of consistently good products. That model: milk something that was successful until it is not.

1 comment:

Mark Brandau said...

Didn't "Clash of the Titans" already prove your point? It was filmed in 2-D, then they went back and sprinkled some 3-D dust on it to capitalize on the trend (and Sam Worthington). Most reviews of the 3-D I read for that movie said it sucked.

How did a move that shitty not involve George Lucas?