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“Super 8” Wins the Super Bowl Movie Marketing Game

"Super 8" Wins the Super Bowl Movie Marketing Game

Judging by hot searches and polls and general film bloggery, J.J. Abrams’ “Super 8” is the most anticipated, or at least the most buzzing, movie advertised during the Super Bowl yesterday. Part of this likely has to do with its secrecy. And it seemed to come out of nowhere for most folk. Even those who follow movie sites and news hadn’t yet seen so much footage from the sci-fi film, and the rest of America probably hadn’t even heard of it until the spot aired during the game. Unlike “Captain America,” “Thor,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides” and “Transformers 3,” this is not an already anticipated adaptation or sequel. And unlike the straightforward-sounding “Cowboys and Aliens,” “Super 8” is still enough of a mystery to have people curiously looking around today (appropriately, Abrams did his first talk on the film to the LA Times yesterday, as well).

Overall it appears Steven Spielberg, who produced “Super 8,” is the real big winner. He also had footage from his new TV production, “Terra Nova,” debut last night, and that too is generating a lot of talk. Interestingly, the movie looks a lot like a combo of all of Spielberg’s alien movies (specifically “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” “E.T.” and “War of the Worlds”) — there’s even a Fanning in it — while the TV show obviously borrows very heavily from “Jurassic Park,” right down to the shot of the T-Rex running after a vehicle. Interestingly enough, people are also likening it to “Lost,” which was an Abrams co-creation. Oh, and Spielberg also produced “Transformers.” Now I wish we’d gotten ads for “War Horse” and/or “The Adventures of Tintin.” Also maybe it’s time for a new, rather than re-posted “If Filmmakers Directed the Super Bowl” with a Spielberg parody?

See what they’re saying about the trailer round the Film Blog Water Cooler after the jump.

Steven Zeitchik at 24 Frames:

The actual movie ads? They landed with more of a thud.

Perhaps the most well received — or at least the most intriguing — came with “Super 8,” the J.J. Abrams-directed, Steven Spielberg-executive produced science-fiction film that comes out in June. While some Twitter users said it reminded them a little too much of Spielberg’s “E.T.,” comments about the commercial were retweeted often and generously.

Daniel Frankel at TheWrap:

Among the flurry of movie trailers for Paramount summer blockbusters debuting during the Super Bowl, the Marvel-produced “Thor” (pictured left) was among the most anticipated … but it was spot for the Steven Spielberg-produced, J.J. Abrams-directed alien sci-fi film “Super 8” that was easily most compelling.

Drew McWeeny at HitFix:

It’s like someone dropped the scale of a 2011 action film right smack dab into the heart of early ’80s Spielburbia, and the result is about a bazillion people who just went, “I think I need to see ‘Super 8.'” Well-played, Paramount.

Erik Davis at Cinematical:

Right away Steven Spielberg’s paw prints are all over this brand new trailer for J.J. Abrams’ ‘Super 8’ — a film that, up until now, has been shrouded in mystery. Is it another ‘Cloverfield,’ or is it more like early Steven Spielberg (‘E.T.,’ ‘Close Eccounters of the Third Kind’)?

Bob Westal at Premium Hollywood:

the one that maybe has aroused the most curiosity, if only because the least has been known up to now. J.J. Abrams’ “Super 8.” True to its press, what little there’s been, it appears to be kind of “Close Encounters of the Extra-Terrestrial Kind.”

Kristopher Tapley at In Contention, from a countdown of his favorite Super Bowl trailers:

1. “Super 8″
E.T. with Coach Taylor? Where do I sign up?

Willa Paskin at Vulture:
Abrams’s top secret Spielberg homage showed us almost nothing: This 30-second ad showed us just enough to make us want to go watch all of Spielberg’s older films and to totally renew our faith in the hype. Also, Coach Taylor!

Devin Faraci at Badass Cinema:

ET and The Goonies probably sums it up (although I bet Abrams would prefer Stand By Me).

That’s more clear now that the film’s Super Bowl ad has aired and looks like someone was tasked with making Amblin: The Motion Picture. […] so obviously Spielbergian that it would have been called a blatant rip-off if the guy hadn’t produced the film. This seems to go beyond the way that De Palma homaged Hitchcock


Super 8 looks to be JJ’s loving nod to the great Amblin films of the 80s. You know. Movies Like The Goonies and Gremlins. Yeah, this could be great.

Nick Newman at The Film Stage:

Forget Transformers 3, Fast Five or Thor . This is the kind of ad that all movies should aspire to for the Super Bowl. J.J. Abrams said he wanted to capture the feeling of executive producer Steven Spielberg‘s Amblin films from the 70′s and 80′s, and just this thirty seconds makes me think he might have done it. Seemingly taking a page from everything in those films, but also feeling completely new, this looks terrific.

Brian Clark at Movieline:

Based on the music and the storyline of this preview, you may have also wondered this morning whether Steven Spielberg commissioned an action-packed remake of E.T. from J.J. Abrams. Upon closer inspection, this is actually a new movie…I think?
Grade: C

Josh Tyler at Cinema Blend examines the trailer shot-by-shot in search of clues. Here’s what he has to say about a scene with some sort of military group:

They look as though they could be arrayed in a circular formation around a hole, but perhaps just as importantly they don’t seem entirely sure what they’re supposed to be doing other than standing and staring at the light shining back at them. More than anything they remind me of the soldiers in H.G. Wells War of the Worlds, standing around outside the pit where the first alien space craft fell, watching and unsure of what to do until the aliens opened their hatch and started destroying everything in sight. Is that what’s going on here? Maybe.

Also, “Super 8” is narrowly beating “Captain America” in Slashfilm’s poll. The same site has a screenshot of what is believed to be the “creature.”

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