The BIZ: Verizon Wireless Rings Up Two Towers
New Line Cinema sequel The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers opens Dec. 18 with promotional support from new partners Verizon Wireless and Air New Zealand, plus a serious boost in November from a new, longer DVD edition of the first The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring.
“The extended version of the DVD is itself marketing for the release of the second film,” said Lisa Balshan, New Line svp-national promotions.
Following the DVD’s Nov. 12 launch (with a movie discount coupon for Two Towers’ theatrical opening), Verizon Wireless support kicks in with cellular phone icons, ring tones and screensavers, building up to the film’s pre-Christmas debut.
With all three Rings shot entirely in New Zealand, Air New Zealand plans to paint movie art on its jets. Promos focus on enhancing the film franchise rather than on the first Rings’ opening weekends needs.
“The first film was broad-based awareness,” Balshan said. “We’ve got higher awareness numbers now than we’ve ever hoped for. The awareness part is done. This is about keeping the property more personal.”
General Mills plans sweepstakes/Rings signage in Mills’ food service unit-run high school and college cafeterias. The American Library Assn. plans a Rings literacy program, Balshan said.
New Line passed on a beverage partner. Unlike last December’s first Rings, Burger King will not promote the sequel, committed now to the Nov. 19 DVD/video release of DreamWorks‘ Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron. The first Rings electronics partner, JVC, is part of this year’s DVD hype around Artisan/Republic’s It’s a Wonderful Life.
Along with support from New Line’s AOL sister units America Online and the WB network, the NBA will do its second “quest-for-the-rings” promo around its early season games on AOL’s TNT.
— David Finnigan
Published: October 14, 2002
Comments: With Burger King not promoting the sequel, does this mean we won’t be seeing the BK “Ring of Power” Kids Meal toys this December? If you have the ‘inside word,’ keep us posted. – chelseagirl