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USA Holds Court With ‘Ultimate Jordan' Home Video

17 Aug, 2001 By: Jessica Wolf

USA Home Entertainment's Ultimate Jordan DVD streets, appropriately,Oct. 23. The date corresponds to basketball star Michael Jordan's longtime jersey number, 23.

Sal Scamardo, USA v.p., business development and sports programming, says he hopes the DVD release willalso correspond to an announcement regarding the king of basketball's decision to return to the court. Such news would “ratchet up a notch” the studio's already beefy marketing campaign for the title, Scamardo says.

“Regardless of whetherMichael returns to the game, the fact is that it's news. He's still very big news. It's still front page news and that's just going to help.”

USA is promoting the two-disc DVD set, which includes five previously released, remastered Jordan VHS programs, a slew of special features and a 16-page color book, as a collectible. Some promotion will be gearedtowards Christmas shoppers --targeting advertising and listings in numerous holiday gift guides. The $26.98 suggested retail price also makes it perfect stocking stuffer fodder, Scamardo says.

“We could have gone and priced this at over $30 and gotten away with it,” he says. “But we were able to pull this off and deliver it with what I think is an aggressive price but not so low that people think that it's not a solid product.”

USA has also teamed up to cross-promote Ultimate Jordan with ElectronicArts' Michael Jordan One on One game, due this fall. USA previously targeted gamers with its NBA Live video that corresponds to EA's ongoingNBA Live game series. “Those are enormously popular games and we believethe Michael Jordan game is going to be very popular as well,” Scamardo says. “Of course we love the fact that they [game consoles] play DVDsnow. Those kids [with consoles that play DVDs] are definitely going to be interested in picking up a Jordan DVD.”

The DVD will include game trailers and sample game plays, Scamardo says.

Nike will heavily merchandise and run trailers of Ultimate Jordan atNiketown locations. Part of the lure of the DVD, Scamardo says, is that it includes footage from the star's many Nike commercials, includingfunny outtakes.

USA is also planning a full consumer print, radio, television and Webadvertising barrage.

The Ultimate Jordan DVD Collection includes Come Fly With Me, MichaelJordan's Playground, Air Time, Above and Beyond, His Airness and boasts70 minutes of bonus footage.

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