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Marketers dig in for treasure in ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest’

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Marketers dig in for treasure in ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest’

When it comes to movie marketing and using brand alliances, Hollywood movies are matching Indian films in all spheres. Joining the likes of ‘The Da Vinci Code’, ‘MI-III’ and ‘Superman Returns’ is ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest’, which released in India on July 21, 2006.

Some of the brand alliances seen for Pirates include Videocon. The association sees a treasure hunt through TVC and SMS (using a mobile partner short code). The movie has used TV and outdoor mediums to push this promotion, under which a question is asked in the TVC for which one has to see the movie and send the correct answer through SMS. The prizes include Videocon Plasma TVs, etc.

Another tie-up is with Crossword and Sterling Publishers meant for children. The event is called ‘Pirates of the Caribbean - Origami competition’, where children have to create different shapes out of paper with the theme of Pirates of the Caribbean.

Media tie-ups include one with HBO, which would feature the big preview (Behind the scenes). Also, activities have been undertaken in print involving trade magazines as well as radio. History Channel is also on the list with significant on air promotions.

In addition, the entire Disney Channel has also come together to back this film. Speaking on the experience of tying up with brands in India, Divya Pathak, Marketing Manager, Sony Pictures, said, “Thanks to the ‘Pirates’, the franchise already has good equity in this market. However, Indians traditionally do not have as much of a ‘pirates history’ as the western world (think Captain Hook in Peter Pan), so the challenge has been to communicate the scale, adventures and imagination that this film brings to audiences across the world.”

Pathak is very positive about the initiatives undertaken for the movie. She said, “The campaign has been very hard hitting and we are fairly sure that India will follow the rest of the world in a super opening and great box office performance of the movie.”

She further explained that the brand associations had been done keeping in mind the entire core concept of “looking for the dead man’s chest” to present the adventure and scale of the film to the audience even through the promotions.

“And also to reward the audience with a prize that would be like treasure for most of us, for example, plasma TVs. There is plenty of activity coming from all Disney companies – merchandise, books, mobile assets, contests on the channel, re-release of special edition DVD of ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl’ and its re-release on Zee Studio.”

As is known, ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest’ is the sequel to the blockbuster ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl’ starring Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightly. The movie has been in the news of late for an unprecedented performance at the US Box Office. Unlike some recent hits like ‘Superman Returns’ and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire’, ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest’ has seen a phased worldwide release and the release date in India is July 21, whereas the US release date was July 7, 2006.

Giving the rationale behind this, an SPE official said, “In a phased release, you can earn word of mouth by the time it comes to the later markets and you can see that in this case, it has turned in our favour with the smashing US performance.”


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