Little Bear DTV coming to a VCR near you
Paramount Home Entertainment will paw its way to stores with a new Little Bear direct-to-video title launching on August 7. For the release of Little Bear the Movie, which prebooks on July 3, PHE will launch with print ads and TV spots targeting moms. It is also trailering the movie on several of its kid and family titles, including Rugrats in Paris: The Movie and select Little Bill, Dora the Explorer and Blue’s Clues episodic releases.
Paramount will lend additional marketing support for the vid with a targeted mail-out of 500,000 in-school Little Bear activity kits to families with preschool children in the U.S. Produced by Canadian toonco Nelvana, which also does the TV show that airs in the U.S. on Nick Jr., Little Bear recently picked up best animated feature honors at Sprockets, a Toronto-based international film festival for children. PHE also previewed the movie at the Kids First! Film Festival, which made stops in L.A., New York and three other U.S. cities.
Grinch launches VHS/DVD with green gusto
If Universal Studios Home Video has its way, consumers will be seeing green again this holiday season. On November 20, the studio plans to release its box-office behemoth from last year, Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas, on VHS (US$24.98) and DVD (US$26.98). Uni will also make available a deluxe VHS gift set, featuring a Grinch plush doll, for US$29.98; and a limited edition DVD gift set, which comes with a pop-up set replication of the Grinch’s home and Who-Ville, for US$39.98.
To match the heft of the film, which was last year’s top-grossing movie, taking in more than US$260 million at theaters, Uni has cobbled together a monstrous marketing plan that should ensure that every man, woman and child gets Grinched. Valued at US$20 million, the campaign includes promotional partnerships with: Heinz, which will feature the Grinch and other characters from the film on its bottles of green and red ketchup; Hershey, which will create special Grinch candies; Wendy’s, which will offer Grinch premiums in a national kids meal program; and pubco Random House, which, along with First Book (a U.S. non-profit organization that provides reading materials to low-income kids), will sponsor celebrity readings of Dr. Seuss titles. Additionally, Uni will sticker over 100 million bananas with a pic of the Grinch’s gob at supermarkets.
Starting November 1, Uni will launch its teaser campaign for the movie with outdoor and on-line advertising, 15-second spots on select network and cable channels, and an in-school marketing campaign.
On November 11, Uni will expand the campaign to include exposure in mom-targeted magazines (People, Women’s Day and Family Circle) and on kids cable channels (Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, Family Learning Channel), all major TV networks and radio stations in the top-50 U.S. markets.
Portal partner MSN Network will also maintain a Grinch mini website, where consumers can check out exclusive footage cut from the movie, play Grinch games or enter an on-line Who-ville sweepstakes, which will award the (lucky?) winner the chance to have his or her home temporarily transformed into a Who-house for a Grinchmas event. The Green Guy prebooks September 25.