Like many of you, on July 4th I saw the longest commercial ever produced: Transformers. This 2-hour, 20-minute commercial, brought to you by DreamWorks Pictures, a division of Viacom (NYSE: VIA), Hasbro (NYSE: HAS), and various sponsors, truly raised the bar for special effects in advertisements.
The most incredible part of this story: I actually paid to watch this commercial. Like TiVo, only backward. Apparently, my friends and I weren't the only ones who walked into the trap, as the film has already grossed nearly $66 million heading into its first weekend. Somewhere, a Hasbro executive is smiling mischievously.
Foremost among the film's legion of product placements was General Motors
As over-the-top as GM's placements were, they paled in comparison to the gratuitous sequences plugging Nokia, Microsoft, and Pepsi
I'm really hoping the Mountain Dew machine survives to see the likely sequel. I can see it now: A roguish loner with a heart of gold, but who is too much of a nonconformist to team up with the straight-laced Autobots. He finally caves, though, and helps the Autobots to vanquish evil and save humanity, in the process delivering vast quantities of ice-cold Mountain Dew to the human populace before retreating to his alternative, snow-boarding lifestyle.
Who knows, maybe in the sequel he'll have a rival who fires Coke bottles. Given the amount of product placement in the first film, you certainly can't rule it out.
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