5. The Power Of The Blog
Snakes On A Plane (2006)
In 2005, New Line Cinema wiped the dust off an old script called Venom and sent it out for a rewrite under a less cryptic moniker: Snakes On A Plane.
Screenwriter Josh Friedman (War Of The Worlds) passed on the project, but talked it up on his popular blog (“It’s the Everlasting Gobstopper of movie titles!”).
Viral Pieces: Friedman's enthusiasm was the touchstone that sparked a multi-headed online fanboy frenzy. Fan-made trailers, poems, foreign translations (all here.) See Friedman's original blog here.
For a (very short) while, there were whispers of a creative revolution. 'Forget small, unreliable focus groups. These Internet guys can not only promote our movie, they can help us write it, too!'
Infectious? Sort of. Filmmakers’ production blogs are now an integral part of pre-release publicity. But after Snakes poisonous box office, they’re no longer asking for quite so much outside input.
6. Promos Win Prizes
The Da Vinci Code (2006)
Sony teamed up with Google to run ‘The Da Vinci Code Google Quest’, a series of online puzzles and challenges in which players could compete to win a luxury holiday and a host of Sony gadgets.
Viral Pieces: Cryptic puzzles hosted at google.com/davincicode (since removed).
Infectious? Nope. Too ambitious. The sheer scale of the Google Quest project and its subsequent logistical hitches meant – in terms of mainstream movie virals – that nothing like it has been attempted since.