Tag Archives: AFI Fest

Juno: Marketing, The Dancing Elks And…Oscar?

As many have mentioned, Fox Searchlight might just reap gold with the possibly counter programming genius, that being the release of Juno in December when theaters are otherwise jammed with serious “awards films” and some movie goers simply want some diversion from the onslaught of There Will be Blood, Charlie Wilson’s War, The Kite Runner and No Country For Old Men. Not to disparage these films, of course. I’ve seen the Coen Brothers’ pic (genius), will be seeing Blood on Friday and am looking forward to seeing the others, but sometimes you need something….else. Juno fills the “funny and smart” niche to a T. You know what else? It’s also a bona fide Oscar contender for best original screenplay and has an outside chance at best actress, as well. I’ll definitely continue to be watching and posting on the awards buzz for this and the rest of the “contenders” as the winter unfolds!
Word of mouth on this film is overwhelmingly positive and so far it has an 81 on Metacritic but it ain’t just the critics who are pushing this pic. While the film is indeed worthy of praise (but there are two critics on the Metacritic list I am ashamed of agreeing with…guess who!) the studio has been pretty smart in building buzz at fests, in part by employing local teams of “Dancing Elks,” dressed like Paulie Bleeker (Michael Cera) the progenitor of the “sea monkey” (Juno’s phrase, not mine!) being carried by the title character. They even hand out orange tic tacs, a favorite of Bleeker’s. No one knows what’s going on, so of course they ask and then are intrigued. Seems to be working at the three places I’ve seen it, Toronto, AFI and Denver. I wonder what they made of it in Thessaloniki and Gijón?
After the jump, some pics from Toronto, AFI and Denver:

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Kicking Off: AFI Fest 2005

Thursday began a 17-day, two city trip to Los Angeles and Denver for the AFI Los Angeles Film Festival and Denver International Film Festival and I couldn’t be happier. While I was once unsure as to whether I was in Chicago or Denver on a layover, I’ve never had to call down to the front desk of a hotel to find out what city I was in, so I am not a full-fledged ‘Road Warrior.’ However, I do travel 3-4 months out of the year and I’ll admit it, I love to travel. Coach class sucks, though. As a frequent traveler, I upgrade a lot and am just a wee bit spoiled. It’s all relative, really. It’s not like I’d ever pay for business class, but when you’re in coach and being offered a day-old turkey wrap for purchase while the smell of roast salmon wafts through the aircraft from business class, it’s hard not to feel a little bit sour.

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