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Artisan Plans a Boatload of Promotion for <I>Jonah</I>

11 Dec, 2002 By: Stephanie Prange

Artisan Home Entertainment is planning numerous cross-promotional partners and the largest home video advertising campaign in the Family Home Entertainment arm's history for Big Idea Productions' Jonah — A VeggieTales Movie, which debuts March 4 (prebook Jan. 21; Jan. 14 for prepacks).

“We think it's going to be a big hit,” said SVP of marketing Hosea Belcher, adding the company expects to ship close to 4 million units. “The title really delivers. It has a fan base that's so broad. It should be the biggest [property] of the year for FHE. It's a universal message about compassion that's important in this time.”

The advertising campaign is “definitely millions of dollars,” Belcher said. The first flight of television and radio advertising breaks the last week in February and continues throughout the month of March. A second flight will be timed to the Easter holiday in April.

Tie-in partners for the title, which earned more than $25 million theatrically, include Applebee's, Auntie Anne's, Chuck E Cheese, Curad Bandages, Langer's Juice, Sea World and Souper Salad.

Most of the partners joined the title for the video campaign. Artisan has worked with Langer's and Chuck E Cheese in the past; Applebee's, Auntie Anne's, Curad, Sea World and Souper Salad are new partners for Artisan.

The film also has toy licensees Belcher said Artisan is promoting to retailers in the hope that they will design displays.

All 1,500 Applebee's restaurants will participate in an Applebee's Kid's Only Clubprogram that will feature the video on 4 million Jonah-themed activity booklets and plastic cups to be distributed to youngsters.

Auntie Anne's Hand-Rolled Soft Pretzels will sponsor aspecially-created Jonah character plush for a nominal fee when ordering twosoft pretzels and a drink from any of Auntie Anne's 650-plus domestic locations.In-store POP at more than 700 mall-based Auntie Anne's stores nationwide will support the promotion. Additionally, FHE will package an Auntie Anne's coupon offering savings inside the Jonah DVD and VHS.

Chuck E. Cheese's will highlight Jonah through an in-restaurant promotional campaign that will feature Jonah stickers in more than 150,000 birthday goodie bags and as prizes. The restaurant will also play the Jonah trailer in all Chuck E. Cheese's nationwide during the restaurant's fun and famous entertainment shows as well as display in-store signage promoting the home video release. FHE willdrive traffic to Chuck E. Cheese's locations by packaging a coupon within both the Jonah DVD and cassette.

Curad will support Jonahby featuring a burst promoting the title on the front of more than 300,000 boxes of Curad's VeggieTales brand kids adhesive bandages. FHE will include a Curad coupon packaged with both the Jonah DVD and VHS.

Langer's Juice will highlight Jonahby featuring Jonah-themed labels on more than 1.5 million juice bottles and by hosting a sweepstakes that will award one lucky family a trip for four to SeaWorld in San Diego. The special Jonah bottles and sweepstakes will be promoted through a regional freestanding newspaper insert reaching 30 million households that will also tag the home video release. FHE will package a Langers coupon with both the Jonah DVD and VHS.

SeaWorld will donate three trips to its San Diego park — including airfare, hotel, car rental, tickets and more — valued at more than $4,000 per trip. FHE will support SeaWorld with a special discount on admission offer packaged within both the JonahDVD and VHS.

Souper Salad will feature Jonah in the chain's tagged radio and TV advertising and in-store signage. FHE will include a Souper Salad coupon in both the Jonah DVD and VHS.

Big Idea's fan-based marketing developed over the past 10 years will also support the title. The “VeggieTales” series has sold more than 30 million videos.

The two-disc JonahDVD includes never-before-seen outtakes produced specifically for its home video release, three audio commentaries, five featurettes and three music videos.The video comes packaged with a holo-foil wrap in a limited edition clamshell package that differentiates the full-length movie from VeggieTales short-form videos.

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