Ok, take a good look at this poster. We have George Clooney and that guy from The Office, plus a bunch of other dudes. All of them wearing some very old football gear and sporting really funny facial expressions. So I’m thinking this is a somewhat broad comedy/farce revolving around the early days of football. Then I read the tagline, which makes all that I just said very obvious.
Looks good. Probably will have a few laughs. The historic setting makes me think this won’t be a typical comedy, but something a little smarter, with perhaps a little throwback to old time movie comedies. A football comedy probably won’t appeal to the ladies very much, but hopefully Clooney’s presence will solve that.
Now let’s look at this other poster.
Hmm. A romantic comedy with George Clooney and Renée Zellweger. Looks like it will have a lot of … romance. The image has a bunch of colored lights and is very soft. Kind of girly really. But Clooney is so cool and smooth, he should be able to add some guy appeal to this. It also seems like a period piece. It will probably be very classy. Yeah, sure, I’m kind of interested.
What is that you say? Both of these posters are for the same movie? Surely you kid?
When Chris from Movie Marketing Madness wrote about the first poster he noticed the absence of Zellweger and wondered whether we were going to see a two-pronged campaign, one focusing on the football and one focusing on the romance. He thinks this new poster shows that that is the case. Perhaps, although I should note that the second poster appeared in Empire, a British publication. So maybe they will focus more on the romance on the other side of the Atlantic, while focusing on the football in the US.
Either way, the truth is that they have three main elements they can use to sell this movie: early football comedy, romance and George Clooney. But they haven’t found a way to sell all of those things together in a single coherent message. So instead they came up with two posters that are so different they make the movie seem schizophrenic.
(Posters via ComingSoon and Empire)
One of the things that you have to do whenever you have a film that is based on a TV series is to convince people that this is more than simply an extra long episode and that the movie really is worth the trip to the theater. And I think that’s a bit of what they are trying to do with the big, shiny letters against the black background. It screams “This is an event! It will be bigger and more glamorous than the TV version! You must be there!”
But even if that is not enough to really make the movie seem different than the series, the poster still should be successful in getting the Sex and the City audience interested in the film, as it signals that the movie will have many of the things that made the show interesting. The glamor, the glitz, the fashion, the class, the fun. Missing is the friendship between the ladies, but that is harder to convey in a poster and I understand their choice to go for a more clean image that doesn’t hit on it. And since the film only opens in may it’s quite possible that we will get posters featuring the other main characters and highlighting their comradery later on.
I also like the combination of the bright pink with the black background. It fits with the shows aesthetic and it’s distinctive enough and loud enough to get attention. And, as a bonus, it looks good.
Overall I think it’s a fine poster for this particular movie, as long as they are not interested in reaching a much broader audience than they used to reach with the show.
(Via Yahoo Movies)
So, here is the deal: you either find the idea of Patrick Dempsey as a maid of honor hilarious or you don’t. No poster is going to make you want to see this movie if that basic premise doesn’t appeal to you. At least no poster that is at all honest about the film’s content.
Considering that constraint I think the poster does a fine job of selling the movie. The film’s concept is conveyed quite clearly, Dempsey looks good stands out nicely in the poster, and we even get a little bit of Michelle Monaghan, which is always nice. I’m not sure how wise it is to center a marketing campaign on Dempsey, considering he is unproven (to say the least) as a movie star. But again, that goes to the movie, and the marketing team can’t do much to get away from it.
Often the poster designers seem not to know what to do with all the credits they have to place in the poster, and they end up just cramming all that text in a corner where it doesn’t get on the way too much. So I think that what they have done here, incorporating the credits (and title) fully into the poster’s image is quite clever. And it ties well into the film’s title.
That said, the poster doesn’t offer much besides that bit of cleverness and Katherine Heigl looking pretty. One can probably tell from the poster that this is some sort of romantic comedy, but nothing more specific about the film’s plot.
My guess is that they are counting on Heigl being enough of a star right now to sell the film pretty much all by herself. And although her star seems to be rising fast, I’m not sure that is such a great idea.
(click for a large version)
So here we have the surprisingly romantic and surprisingly earnest poster for Why Did I Get Married. And you know what? I kind of love it.
You might remember the teaser poster for this film, which was mostly composed of the title with the upside down interrogation point. This new poster keeps much of the look of that poster, but adds heart shaped photos of the characters and also offers some answers to the title’s question. You’ll probably need to see the larger version to make the text out, but to save you same time here are the answers the poster offers:
…because no one inspires me more.
…because we complete each others sentences.
…because two are stronger than one.
…because every moment we share is better than the last.
Awfully sappy and a bit cliched, isn’t it? And yet there is part of me that responds to that in a very positive way.
It’s very hard to see a poster, or any other movie related marketing material, that presents love and marriage in such an earnest and unflinchingly positive and romantic way. There is generally some humor, some drama or some cynicism attached, which serves both to attract men and to fend off any claims that the movie might be naive. So this approach surprised me. But even beyond that I guess it also connected with the more romantic and idealistic side of me.
As for whether this is a wise way to market the movie, I don’t know. My first impression is that this poster is likely to alienate most of the men and all of the teenagers, and it’s not even likely to really connect with most of the older women. But Tyler Perry is a true phenomenon, and one that i don’t really “get”. And I think he understands his audience much better than I ever possibly could, so perhaps this is exactly the right approach for a film by him to be taking.
When I first saw this poster I was immediately reminded of the poster for The Squid and the Whale, for what I think are fairly obvious reasons.
Despite the similarities I think that the poster for The Squid and the Whale is much better. It’s sharper and has a cleaner look. It also does a better job of getting us interested in the interaction between the characters.
The main characters in Dedication are a kid’s book writer and his illustrator. So the use of drawings make sense. But the drawings themselves don’t actually seem to tell us anything about the movie, so the main effect of their use is to give the image a more unique and cutesy look, which seems like a lost opportunity.
Beyond that we have a picture of the two characters sitting together. Their positioning, clothes and interaction scream indie rom-com to me, for some reason. I would have preferred to see a picture that made the relationship between the two characters seem more interesting and that tried to differentiate it from the thousands of other rom-coms out there, but this is not a particularly bad picture.
This type of poster design, with the heads and part of the torso of the two main characters depicted above the title, and a landscape with one of the characters depicted below the title, seems to be quite common nowadays. Cinemablend points out the DVD cover for Miss Potter, which is very similar. And this poster for the latest cinematic incarnation of Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice also follows the same pattern:
Interestingly, the poster for Becoming Jane gives out out a much lighter and fluffier vibe than the Pride & Prejudice poster, probably because of the expression of the characters, the background and the lightening. As a matter of fact, the poster for Becoming Jane makes the film seem a little too light and fluffy for my tastes.
And in case anyone is interested, and went to see Pride & Prejudice, and quite enjoyed it. So it’s not like I dislike all romantic movies.