OBLIVION Trailers, Teaser, Spots and Featurettes: Saving a Mediocre Movie from Oblivion

It’s getting harder to assess the effect of movie marketing, given the multiple, intersecting components of any campaign. Take for example, Oblivion, a B.O. bomb in the US with $77M in domestic ticket sales, but with $224M worldwide, with nearly 66% of its grosses deriving from international distribution. (Thanks to BoxOfficeMojo for this!) The US movie reviews were mediocre to poor to withering, while the audience vote (per Rotten Tomatoes) was an uninspiring 66%.

One interpretation of the evidence is that the extensive, spectacular and compelling teasers, trailers, spots and featurettes allowed a gorgeous but not especially good film to make some of its production back. And there’s the Tom Cruise fatigue factor to consider, but such analysis is beyond my ability and outside my interest.

What I did want to highlight in today’s post is the sheer volume of beautifully produced a/v materials that Universal commissioned for this project. I’ve been watching official trailers 1, 2 and 3, the teaser, the tv spots, featurettes about the bubble craft that Cruise pilots, the skytower living quarters, and despite disparaging comments online and from friends who’ve seen the movie, despite Roger Ebert’s critical review and my skepticism about Tom Cruise block-busters, I want to see it. And that, given the resources committed to support the marketing of this big-budget sci-fi thriller, is as it should be. If money and talent couldn’t buy audience interest–even for undistinguished or lousy movies–or especially for such–the entertainment industry would soon be out of business.

So here, for your enjoyment (and without further comment) are a selection of a/v materials designed to attract, engage and focus your attention on Oblivion. Enjoy! And exercise your right to be persuaded against the better judgement of your peers, the experts and the your instincts.

Consider this a shout out to the marketing magic of the trailermakers.

Trailer #2

Trailer #3

Featurette #1

Sky Tower Featurette:

TV Spot (1 of 3!)

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movietrailers101 by Fred Greene is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License

About Frederick Greene

Entertainment Copywriter & Visiting Assistant Professor, UCLA Dept. of Theater, Film & Television. I teach a graduate seminar in new movie marketing, which focuses on the history, contemporary practice and likely future of a/v advertising for motion picture entertainment.
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