The following is part of a viral marketing campaign by Paramount Studios:
In the past week, there’s been a surge in sightings of mysterious robots in cities and famous landmarks around the world, including Tokyo, Berlin, Rome, Barcelona, Perth and even Machu Pichu. People from across the globe have been posting videos and photos of these sightings on a multitude of sites. Perhaps the most bizarre sighting so far was shot by fans at the Champion’s League final in Rome:
Barcelona Robot Sighting
The Machu Pichu Sighting
The most recent sightings have been in France and the UK. In France, two model-airplane-enthusiasts watched their airplane crash land, and transform into a robot.
In the UK, there was a similar incident involving a scooter turning into a robot-type creature.
These robot sightings have so far been tracked by two conspiracy blogs run by Robo-Warrier and Leo Ponce de Leon Spitz. To get a full understanding of the campaign narrative so far it’s best to view the two conspiracy blogs yourself – Check them out at:
therealeffingdeal.com and gianteffingrobots.com
Read more on page 2
In case you’ve been living under a rock or perhaps have been off the grid for the past year, Michael Bay and Paramount Studios will soon be releasing Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen. Just to make sure you know about and see this movie, Bay and associates have decided to release a viral marketing campaign to help promote the film.
Heath Tyldesley, marketing director for Paramount Pictures International had this to say:
“Extending the narrative of the film into the real world prior to a film’s release is a great way of building buzz and awareness amongst fans and viewers, rewarding them for their engagement with the first film. Directors are really embracing broadening the platforms of the films narrative to include the web and Michael Bay is no exception.”
Viral marketing isn’t new or weird and it’s a great way to help promote a film. J.J. Abrams ran a massive viral marketing campaign for one of the earlier seasons of Lost and more recently, The Dark Knight did it months before the movie had finished principle photography and District 9 is currently running ads on bus benches along with viral posters. What is slightly weird, though, would be the timing that Bay and Paramount have decided to release their viral marketing for Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen.
Michael Bay is trying to give audiences an “extended film experience” and that is very commendable but I can’t help but think these videos and pictures shouldn’t have been released almost a year ago. I think they would have been very popular while the movie was being shot and would have just given fans glimpses of what was coming.
Instead, we get very brief and grainy shots of the robots just a week before the full movie hits theaters. In fact, we see more of the Transformers in the trailers and TV spots than we do here. I’m not saying they aren’t cool to watch but I just wish fans could have seen them WAY before now. If Bay really wanted us to feel like we were being invaded by robots, then he should have released these during major events around the world – the Olympic Games, Super Bowl, World Cup, maybe even the Presidential Inauguration. Ok so maybe the last one wouldn’t have gone over so well but my point remains the same; great idea, bad timing.
What do you think of the videos and their timing?
Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen starts Wednesday June 24, 2009.