This morning began fairly inauspiciously, but as I loitered on the Subway platform, I noticed a rather badly art-directed ad for the latest Jason Statham vehicle “Transporter 3“. I was moved to chronicle said design deficit, and snapped a picture with my iPhone (well, its no good for calls, websurfing or emails after all). I do actually dimly recollect watching bits of Transporter 1 on a plane with the sound off, and thinking it resembled a long car ad. (And there was a part 2? Who knew!)
I have no beef with product placement (quite the contrary), but only if it is done well … that is to say adds value to the production, and is seamless and intuitive. At the most basic level, sadly, I think the way Audi was integrated on to this billboard – and let’s be fair to these guys – looked shit. The car looks grafted on! I fear this may presage the way the car is featured in the film…
A lot of car manufacturers got “BMW Films” envy, and Audi seem to be one of them. I’ll withhold judgment – as I haven’t seen the film, but my initial reaction is that they failed to make the Audi integration seamless and intuitIve, which for me is the measure of success.
Conversely, Mercedes had their cars removed from the new movie ‘Slumdog’. Evidently, “Slumdog” presented an entertainment marketing conundrum: Only a handful of companies have the global presence to benefit from the worldwide exposure that a motion picture generates, but they also have widely divergent customer tastes to meet — and often divergent business priorities.