Haexagon Concepts monthly recap – July 2012

— The monthly recap post will present you a summary of all our activities and projects during the past month as well as most relevant campaigns from film/ad/TV/web. —

Staff activities:

july 9 – we helped out on our partner SoBig Production’s shoot, a doc feature about the redevelopment process in Kwun Tong, shot vertical! The project will be presented during the Venice Biennale.

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july 13 – review on PAINTED SKIN 2 at Macau Daily: (PDF file)

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july 14 – we went to BarcampHK and presented our “story pitch”, educating on what trans-media is and what it means to HK.

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july 15 – review on $UPERCAPITALIST: http://www.lovehkfilm.com/blog/thegoldenrock/2012/07/15/the-golden-rock-supercaptitalist-edition-featuring-guest-blogger-marco-sparmberg/

july 19-25 – Marco visited the Network of Asian Fantastic Film’s Filmmakers Lab at PiFan2012. All pic galleries here https://haexagon.wordpress.com/tag/pifanbucheonpuchonfilmfest

EAST SCREEN WEST SCREEN shows this month:

Our project updates

Our webseries Squattertown is now part of the newly re-launched New Action Express scheme by CreateHK. As managing authority of this fund the HK Arts Center will distribute the project to partnering festivals around the globe till fall 2013.

We also started co-operating with the Manila based production company Paper Boat Pictures and helping them to get a transmedia campaign for their new feature film off the ground in the Philippines.

Other Campaigns

This month we saw a couple of campaign starts like M. Night Shyamalan’s AFTER EARTH and the reboot of ROBOCOP. And of course we saw the final conclusion to Christopher Nolan’s Batman series rising. While the general THE DARK KNIGHT RISES transmedia campaign was so fragmented and disorganized one remarkable side branch popped out: the campaign to Hans Zimmer’s soundtrack was terrific and created a unique situation. Never before was a soundtrack album that anticipated and hyped before its release. We will analyze this campaign in particular with a future blog post soon.

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Meanwhile in China: PAINTED SKIN 2 wound up to be the most profitable film in Chinese cinema history. Allegedly due to a sophisticated marketing strategy. However, giving a simple photo app and set gossip news spread credit for this success would be naive. This article sums up all important aspects and describes how the producers targeted the film to a specific market and audience while gaining government support: http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/filmblog/2012/jul/31/painted-skin-2-china-storm

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RoboCop (2013) campaign start

2012 and 2013 will be entering film history as the years where all our action film darlings from the 80s & 90s are getting polished CGI overkill remakes. TOTAL RECALL, MAD MAX, JUDGE DREDD, RED DAWN, COMMANDO and of course ROBOCOP. It is evident that the poor Paul Verhoeven is getting ripped off quite a lot lately, especially since rumors of an upcoming STARSHIP TROOPERS just hit the web.

But let’s face it. Verhoeven’s films are sarcastic, dark humored and deep down apply the most striking social criticism. All three aspects are not attributed to Hollywood studio productions lately. Rather the contrary is the grim reality. Studio films have been whitewashed in massage and polished in style. A mislead doctrine that promotes characters and situations with shady ambiguity. Heroes that got no hero qualities anymore. Violence with a PG13 tag and an always sunny happy ending.

So yes, it is time to get concerned when it comes to rebooting the ROBOCOP franchise on the big screen. A franchise that shaped pop-culture and even English colloquial language all over the world. “I’d buy that for a dollar!”

Sony just started it’s (supposedly/hopefully) transmedia campaign  to ROBOCOP by launching a corporate webpage for OmniCorp, the conglomerate that builds the crime fighting robots in the film.  So far, we only know that the name and logo have slightly changed towards  the original. It’s not OCP (Omni Consumer Products) anymore. However, the company still “offers” the Robocop model and the well known ED-209. Except for one promotional corporate video the web page does not offer much at this stage. The video itself is a fairly straight forward promotion video of the company and it’s known propaganda. No sign of actual irony, sarcasm or critique can be found. It’s not funny nor pretty much original.

Despite self-declaring the video as “viral” the studio didn’t created any specific buzz. At this stage it seems unlikely that Sony will run it’s campaign with bold and suggestive fake commercials like it has become one of the trademarks from the original films.

The ROBOCOP cult has such a strong communal power. Last year’s “Detroit needs a Robocop statue” Kickstarter campaign is only one example, but yet, Sony fails to tap into the crowd or maybe doesn’t even want to. Recent transmedia campaign attempts have proven the studios rather aim for creating a new audience inside their strong target demographic  14-20 then to serve the (demographically older) fan base that’s already in place. However, the fact that the ROBOCOP campaign starts even two months before principal Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 photography kicks off is a good sign and indicates a fixed time schedule for periodically released content.

further readings:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/filmblog/2012/jul/09/robocop-remake-ed209-viral-video