Peterloo

REFORM, UNIVERSAL SUFFRAGE, EQUAL REPRESENTATION and LOVE were some of the banners carried by peaceful demonstrators into Manchester on August 16th, 1819. A panicked official unleashed mounted troops onto the crowd, killing 13 men, four women and a child, and seriously injuring nearly 700 others. The horrors of a suppressed democracy -and a timely, brutal reflection of where we find ourselves today.

Deadpool 2 Transmedia Marketing (is awesome)

Fast Company provides an awesome summary of the whacky transmedia Marketing machine for Deadpool 2. I just love all this thinking-out-the-box stuff.

“What 20th Century Fox and Ryan Reynolds did was lean into what worked last time, while expanding ever so slightly into newer, less familiar areas. Like a coloring contest. Or somehow convincing Good Housekeeping magazine to let Deadpool guest edit a holiday issue….plus.the ultimate film soundtrack formula for success (since ’97): a Celine Dion power ballad. Unexpected, sure, but with about 20 million views and bajillions more in earned media, it’s yet another shrewd move by the guy in red tights.

Perhaps the most obvious way Deadpool 2‘s marketing has expanded beyond its initial incarnation is with product marketing. Even there, though, the studio has managed to play it just weird enough to make even a blatant brand tie-in cash grab look like a clever joke. This is not Happy Meal territory. Here we meet Devour frozen sandwiches in what appears to be a middle-of-the-night munchies-induced fever dream, self-aware sell-out accusations and all.

Then there’s Mike’s Harder Lemonade, which goes the pretty traditional route of tie-in packaging, but then added a twist with two pop-up bar events in New York and L.A. that recreate Deadpool’s favorite watering hole, Sister Margaret’s School for Wayward Girls. More impressive is the partnership with candy brand Trolli on a “tiny hands” edition of the gummies, a clever throwback to a memorable scene in the original…”

CNN 18 Places to Visit in 2018

Fourth on CNN’s list of 18 Places to Visit in 2018 is Serbia.

The jigsaw puzzle of countries that once made up Yugoslavia have, in recent years, become some of Europe’s most talked about destinations, particularly the Adriatic coastlines of Croatia and Montenegro. Serbia has somehow lagged behind. Not for long though. Visitors are beginning to descend on this largely undiscovered corner of the region, lured by terrific scenery, rich history, incredible value for money and a lot of cheese.

Belgrade has already established itself as a city that can party and — in much the same way eastern Europe’s big cities did 10 or 15 years ago — is shedding urban Soviet gloom and rushing headlong towards a glitzier future.

By its borders with Bosnia and Kosovo, Serbia’s Kopaonik and Zlatibor national parks offer winter sports and summer escapes in epic mountain scenery. The Tara National Park has gorges overlooked by forested karst hills. In Serbia’s deep south, ?avolja Varoš or Devil’s Town offers a crazy geological spectacle of weird rocky pinnacles. While Serbia lacks its own coastline, the mighty Danube River still lures summertime swimmers to a castle-strewn “riviera.”

Star Trek, Beyond: Even the Big Guns Suck at Marketing

Over at ScyFy, Simon Pegg has been bemoaning the atrocious marketing job done for Star Trek Beyond. He’s particularly scathing about the trailer above.

…It used ‘Sabotage,’ which was our surprise moment in the end. It was supposed to be a very fun and heightened twist, and something that was a big surprise, and they blew it in the first trailer, which really annoyed me. They also made the film look like a boneheaded action film. And they were scared, I think, of mentioning the 50th anniversary. It was fumbled as a thing; they didn’t know what to do with it, and it’s a real shame.

Now here’s a bigger shame: I didn’t even know there was a Star Trek Beyond, at least not as a stand-alone film. As far as I can tell from the series’ marketing to date, all of the new Star Trek movies are completely interchangeable, without any unique selling points, and all essentially one big recycled drama about the tense three-way between Kirk, Spock and Uhuru. Plus some “beam me ups” for good measure. And I had no inkling whatsoever that it was the series’ 50th anniversary.

So you see, sometimes even the Big Guns really suck at movie marketing.