When the Super Bowl commercial for Fast 6 came on, the room erupted. When the trailer featured a car killing an airplane someone threw the bowl of chicken wing bones in the air. And when Michelle Rodriguez’s character appeared in the last frame I fainted.
The franchise has achieved a strange and popular allure, running on the kind of horrible-but-awesome plots usually reserved for old-school Schwarzenegger movies, Roadhouse and Taken 1 – infinity.
Writing in The New York Times, Brooks Barnes reports that Universal, the movie studio promoting the film, has seized upon the fan frenzy. Through creative marketing techniques studio executives are trying to amp up the hype and drive up ticket sales. *Cut to Vin Diesel pressing down on the NOS*
Some notable next level marketing: Universal chose not to release a teaser trailer pre Super Bowl and instead initiated a supercharged ad campaign once the commercial aired. The studio harnessed the wild popularity of it’s stars–Vin Diesel, The Rock, Ludacris– who were encouraged to share posts, pictures and tweets that included behind the scenes material. In addition, fans of the series were polled and actually listening to: the movie’s title, the inclusion of The Rock and the return of Ms. Rodriguez are all ideas that came from the crowd.