Imax Screens 16-Minute 'Avatar' Clip

By Robert Marich
   Aug. 13, 2009 – In its extensive discussion of trailers, Marketing to Moviegoers: Second Edition calls them essentially “free samples” of movies and Fox is now taking the trailer concept to an extreme level with Avatar, which is the Jim Cameron (Titanic) sci fi epic set for Dec. 18 theatrical release.
   A Los Angeles Times article says big-screen Imax theaters will present a 16-minute section of the film starting Aug. 21. Trailers typically run just 2 minutes.
   “The unprecedented promotion signals just how aggressively Fox is pushing its massive event film and how Imax is trying to position its theaters as consumers’ first-choice destination for Avatar," notes the article by Ben Friz and John Horn.
   Fox, which originated Titanic and distributed it internationally, has a $240 million production in Avatar, says the article.
   “Advance screenings of movie footage for the media and at events such as Comic-Con [comic book convention] are fairly common for big-budget Hollywood movies,” continues the Los Angeles Times article. “But no studio has ever shown such an extended excerpt of a film in a broad public setting months before its release. Fox is not paying Imax to use its theaters for the preview, though the studio is bearing the cost of producing and distributing the digital prints. Imax will provide 3-D glasses."
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