- Original Text
- Text added post corrections
Monday, 3 January 2011
In Response to feedback:
- According to the forum on The Boat That Rocked (Pirate Radio)'s IMDB page there were mixed opinions on the film. Generally, positives included the films soundtrack- although many were annoyed by the absence of The Beatles, a typically iconic 60's British band (due to the fact that Universal did not own the rights to use their music on the soundtrack- Michael Jackson once owned their publishing catalog, but sold large parts of it to Sony to finance his later career and lifestyle. EMI and Apple Corps own nearly all their recordings.) It could have further helped the marketing campaign if the Beatles music was used because of its exclusivity and extreme popularity GLOBALLY, adding to the film's national and international appeal.
- Many Americans were angry at the title change, and found it patronising and insulting that Focus Features felt the need to 'dumb it down' for an American audience. This is a popular opinion amongst many online forum users and some movie critics. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1131729/board/nest/149471627?p=1
- United International Pictures (jointly owned by Universal and Paramount) distributed it and marketed it in the UK whereas Focus Features did it in the US. Though they appear to be seperate companies UIP is a global horizontally integrated media conglomerate and Focus Features is actually just an art house division of Universal Pictures. The decision to distribute it through them in America would have marketed the film as a more arty, indie film, attracting a more selective niche audience than the UK. This decision may not have been the right one as it is normally UK audiences that prefer the smaller, more art house films, whereas US audiences tend to prefer big high concept films which you would often associate with large distribution companies such as Universal.
- TBTR had a marketing budget of around $30 million, which is actually quite a large amount, although of course nothing compared to Avatar's $200 million plus. This would have greatly impacted on their marketing schemes as they would not have been able to afford as many TV spots etc. and invest in riskier newer, high concept online viral campaigns like AVTR.com- which actually proved pretty unsuccessful due to lack of maintenance and updates because they could afford to develop multiple strategies such as symbiotic campaigns with huge businesses like McDonald's and Coca Cola. Had UIP put all their money into one big risky branch of, for example online or viral marketing, it would have had no choice BUT to be successful as they did not have the luxury to fallback on any of the other marketing strategies due to a limited budget. Their decision to 'play it safe' and produce a tried and tested traditional campaign may have been the less, in business terms, riskier option. However, a cutting edge campaign could have potentially drawn in larger audiences and contributed to a higher gross at the box office. On the other hand it could have completely flopped and the film could have been seen by even fewer people than it was. Ultimately, it was a risk UIP was not willing to take, which is understandable because no-one is able to predict the outcome of a film's success before it is released- only speculate.