Movie trailers, movie previews, call them what you will. In a world of social media and digital advertising it’s near impossible to escape them. But some of us want to.
With big films come big advertising budgets. Besides the obvious movie posters that lead up to a film are the movie trailers (previews if you want to get technical). The film companies do a fantastic job belting out these trailers on TV and social media. A little too fantastic.
The purpose of these trailers is to gain hype for a film and promote the release. I acknowledge that this is important for a film’s success. In some cases you might argue that a film has failed due to poor marketing approach. The problem I have is that in many cases I know I want to see a film before I see any sort of trailer.
A long time ago I used to get hyped for a trailer’s release. Getting an opportunity to have a sneak peak at a sequel for a franchise I was really into was genuinely exciting. But after some time I realised that while watching the film, I knew what was coming because I had seen it in the trailer. Things stopped surprising me, or I was waiting for something to happen because, well, I’d already seen it.
My number one example is Star Wars.
When I heard about The Force Awakens I knew I wanted to see it. I didn’t need a trailer to hype me up. I wanted to go in fresh but it was much easier said than done. The marketing for The Force Awakens was a blitz. Facebook was filled with ads no matter how many times you told it you are not interested. You can even install applications on your web browser to find key words and block articles from them. Even then it was not 100 per cent success. Muting the TV and averting my eyes everyday was easier said than done. I even got to the crazy point of running out of the cinema during the previews as soon as the trailer started to play.
At the end of the day I saw The Force Awakens with next to no idea of what I was going to see. It was the perfect way to watch Star Wars. Now it’s happening all over again with Star Wars the Last Jedi.
I have since convinced others that watching the trailer only gives away spoilers. Many people I know have devoted themselves, like me, to avoid the trailer. Others have since said they regretted watching it. I’m sure there are others who are sick of spoiler-ridden trailers; if not perhaps you will be less receptive to them now.
We conjured an alternative to traditional trailers, featuring just one scene from the promoted film. You can read all about that here.