Wednesday, February 18, 2009
R-Rated Movie Promotion Shocked Fans
It certainly was a memorable moment for the NASCAR on Fox team. There was a caution period during the Daytona 500 and play-by-play announcer Mike Joy began to read what sounded like a script.
Suddenly, without warning to families, the NASCAR on Fox crew introduced a three-minute preview of the movie “Watchman.” The clip contained brutal violence, adult language and graphic action from an R-rated movie.
While this might have seemed like a good idea to the LA-based Fox TV executives, it was ultimately tasteless and ill-advised during a live NASCAR event. Especially, during the flagship race of the entire Fox TV package, the Daytona 500.
Click here for the Internet Movie Database parent's guide for the "Watchman" movie. This page provides an overview of the content of the movie and the reasons it was given an R-rating.
Click here to see almost exactly the same preview shown during the live NASCAR race. This was not a commercial, but a three minute added sales element inserted into what normally would be NASCAR-related content. Updates from pit road, race recaps and analysis were put on hold.
As we all know, times are tough and added revenue certainly has been a goal for the NASCAR TV partners as the adverstising market continues to shrink. This decision, however, might not have been a good one in retrospect. The time of day, the content of the live TV program and the rating of the movie being promoted just did not mesh.
Email to TDP was thematic in that this type of advertising might have a place later in the evening on TV, but not in the very same program where Fox knows youngsters and families are watching.
The irony of Fox using the animated "Digger" character to sell t-shirts to children and then offering an R-rated movie preview in the very same live NASCAR race was perhaps not lost on many viewers.
What was your opinion of the "Watchman" promotional video shown in the live race?
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Thanks again and happy posting.