Monday, May 10, 2010

Super 8 campaign is super great

Yes, I know the title of this post is cheesy, but it's a water-logged Monday here in Omaha and it is durn hard to wake up when it's this gray out. About a week ago, I caught Cloverfield on some movie station on our digital cable (I have long ago stopped trying to figure out the names of the movie stations, because their call-sign on the guide screen is some weird collection of letters that are supposed to form some kind of clever abbreviation but just leave me as confused as Tracy Jordan's license plate in "30 Rock": ICU81MI). Like any technologically inclined dude, I instantly posted my reaction on twitter and facebook to having rewatched this flick. It was some reasonable, even-handed comment about how I loved Cloverfield and anyone who hated on it for no reason was an ass-faced ass face who should lay down in traffic. Ah, the internet and what it's done to my discourse. Anyhoodle, lots of people instantly jumped in and started agreeing with me, a few of them even pointing out that they had almost as much fun with the viral marketing for the movie as they did with the movie itself. I agree. The mystery that surrounded the movie resulted in a great experience all around for me, even if some angry trolls felt like they were built up too much with hype to enjoy the final product. Those people make me laugh because they act like hype is some chemical they get rufied with that makes them unable to tell whether or not they think something is good on its own merits. I am really getting off track today. The point is this:

Super 8, the new super-secret movie that JJ Abrams is directing for producer Steven Spielberg, has started its viral campaign already. What we have here is a movie that is definitely about aliens (the trailer's opening text mentions Area 51), specifically some kind of terrifying creature. The movie's title, although it could refer to any number of things, likely refers to the handheld cameras used in the 1970s that ran on Super 8 film. I say this is likely because the last shot in the trailer cuts to Super 8 footage. So when you add up the secret movie with viral marketing about an alien creature who is going to be captured on handheld video, you can see why this clearly has nothing to do with Cloverfield, a super-secret movie with viral marketing about a creature captured on handheld video. Wait, what? That's what JJ Abrams swears. He swears that this is NOT related to that previous movie despite all appearances to the contrary. I don't know why he would swear that. Sure, it may be true, but at this point, that only leads me to believe that this is a terribly unoriginal idea, as it seems to be pretty damn close to something his production company has already done. I'm still pumped, but you can see why this is weird.

None of this is the point of this post. So congratulations if you've read through my crap long enough to get to this point. The "game" or viral marketing campaign around Super 8 kicked off in awesome fashion, and you can read all about it at So far, it's not a whole lot, but what there is sounds rad, including buried letters in the trailer that spelled out "scariest thing I ever saw," which resulted in finding a web site that has a countdown timer on it to May 15. The speculation is that's when the official trailer will be released online, but I hope it's something cooler than that. As with the totally and obviously unrelated Cloverfield marketing, there are two ways to play along with this campaign. You can actively get in there and chase down clues...or you can do what I do and check in on Super8News every few days and see what they've got going. I am excited all the way around on this one, even if I feel like I'm being lied to by Abrams...again. I just watched Star Trek again last night and I'm geeked for "Lost" tomorrow, so I'm guessing if Abrams had a project called "Stick Your Finger in this Electric Socket," I'd be walking around with sparks coming out of my butt for a month.

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