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🏀 Space Jam: a (New) Legacy of marketing
The original Space Jam made $230 million in ticket sales, but $1.2 billion in merchandise
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🎬 The movie that pairs Lebron James with the Looney Tunes won the box office competition on its premiere, with $32 million in ticket sales, way above the forecasted $20m, beating marvel’s "Black Widow”.
“Space Jam: The Legacy” isn’t just a movie. It even seems an accessory to the marketing machine built around it. As a reference, the original Space Jam generated more than 5x in merchandise revenue than in ticket sales.
🔀 Named the biggest movie marketing event of the summer, it’s trying to sell everything Warner Bros. has ever made, in an exercise of vertical integration and brand identity: Wonder Woman’s Themyscira for girls and women, The Matrix for older men, Harry Potter for Old Millennials, and so on. A crossover product to deliver pure entertainment to every demographic.
💰Merchandise is a key way studios cash in outside the box office, and, according to Louise Soper, senior vice president of global brand partnerships at Warner Bros., “The property itself is just so appealing that this was definitely one of the films that partners were the most interested in.”.
💪 Warner Bros. linked up with more than 200 partners in its promotion of the film, including Microsoft and Amazon cross-promotions, McDonald’s Happy Meals, BarkBox chew toys for pets, or a $100,000 watch set from Swiss brand Kross Studio. Nike is selling five sneaker styles tied to the film, including Air Force 1s for toddlers and a new LeBron 19.
But they also work with each other in a close network: Nike shoes appear on Fortnite, where James debuts as a playable character, and one design is being paired for sale with a special-edition controller for the Xbox. McDonald’s is offering Space Jam Happy Meals with toys and Space Jam clothes designed by skateboarding label Diamond Supply Co. Consumers can win a jersey from the Diamond x McDonald’s x Space Jam collection if they order through Uber Eats.
Still, a great deal of Space Jam’s partnerships are with apparel and accessories brands, such as H&M, Gap, Tommy Hilfiger, Primark, Forever 21, among others.