With the release of two completely freaking awesome trailers this week, the J.J. Abrams’ directed Star Trek: Into Darkness and the Zack Snyder directed/Christopher Nolan produced Man of Steel also release one viral advertisement each. Oddly enough, both viral videos have a similar production value to eachother.
First, the viral for Man of Steel launched, with heavily distorted imagery of General Zod warning Earth that “You Are Not Alone” and Zod demands Kal-El to surrender to him or watch Earth suffer the consequences. The video is insanely distorted, something like a scrambled message from an alien world might possibly look like if our primitive video software tried to encode it.
Most of the audio is pretty clear, stating Zod’s message loud and clear to the people of Earth. When I first saw it, I was ecstatic at what it looked like the Nolan/Snyder camp had put together for what could be a nice string of viral promotional ads.
Then, on Friday, the first viral for Star Trek: Into Darkness launched. Slightly more traditional, perhaps, with a viral video, with clips from the actual movie being shown in between distorted shots of lead villain John Harrison (played by Benedict Cumberbatch). This one plays out as more like you, the viewer, are seeing this message displayed on a screen, and Harrison is telling a tale of James Tiberius Kirk, and the misfortune that lies ahead for him and his crew.
The play on this is more like a scrambled video, sent to the viewer to forewarn you of the upcoming events.
Both virals are quite excellent in my opinion, but ironic that two virals launched the same week, most likely by two complete different production houses with probably no interaction with eachother whatsoever, happen to put out videos of a similar nature.
Is this the direction that viral marketing is heading? I remember after the still very awesome ‘Inception’ trailer that had that distinct Zack Hemsey track as the music track (you know, BRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHMMMMMMMMMM), then it seemed every movie trailer for a big action blockbuster or big budget sci-fi movie (‘Transformers’, ‘Battleship’, ‘G.I. Joe’, just to name a few) had a similar style to it.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m for it, so long as it’s done well. But this could be an indication of a potential over-saturation of similar marketing for movies, especially if these two have the completely ridiculous openings that is expected of them.
Here’s the two virals launched this week: