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Warner Launches Massive Marketing Push for ‘Oz’

27 Aug, 2013 By: Chris Tribbey

McDonald’s and Amtrak and IMAX. Oh my.

Warner Bros. is launching a massive marketing campaign for the 75th anniversary of The Wizard of Oz, spending an estimated $25 million on advertising and promotional efforts before and after the Oct. 1 release of the film on 3D Blu-ray Disc.

From Sept. 20-Oct. 10, McDonald’s Happy Meals will include one of six toys (Dorothy, Scarecrow, Wicked Witch of the West, Tin Man, Glinda the Good Witch or Cowardly Lion) on a yellow brick road base; Amtrak will advertise the film both on its trains and in its stations from November through the end of the year; and the TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX in Hollywood, Calif., will host the film’s first-ever IMAX 3D release Sept. 15, with a one-week engagement of the film at more than 300 IMAX theaters nationwide to follow.

Those programs and more are meant to help promote the Oct. 1 release of the 75th anniversary edition of the film on DVD, Blu-ray and 3D Blu-ray.

“We are delighted that so many partners have joined us for this unprecedented event,” said Jeff Baker, EVP and GM of theatrical catalog for Warner Bros. Home Entertainment. “Like us, they recognize that The Wizard of Oz is such a timeless brand, one for all ages and all generations. Its magic has helped it to grow, year after year, from a classic to a treasured icon.”

Warner’s home entertainment release is highlighted by a limited, numbered-edition version of The Wizard of Oz 75th Anniversary Collector’s Edition; a five-disc Blu-ray set featuring 3D Blu-ray, DVD and UltraViolet versions of the film; a new documentary; hours of bonuses; and exclusive collectibles, including a deluxe award pin set, a 52-page hardcover photo book, a Ruby Slippers Sparkle Globe, a hardcover journal, a map of Oz and a frame-able photo card.

Warner will also street a two-disc  3D Blu-ray, a single-disc Blu-ray and a two-disc DVD.

Other Wizard of Oz events and promotions include:

• A screening of the film in 3D on Sept. 15 at the Toronto International Film Festival.

• An Amtrak sweepstakes supported by online and social media.

• A “Cupcake Wars” episode (airing Sept. 28) on the Food Network with contestants relaying their personal visions of The Wizard of Oz.

• Approximately 2.5 million bunches of asparagus from Gourmet Trading Company will promote the film on hang tags, and point consumers to a contest on Gourmet's Facebook page.

• The Langer Juice Company will place a premium, on-pack commemorative offer on their juices.

• The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Ad Council will launch an ad campaign focused on child passenger safety, featuring elements of The Wizard of Oz.

• One Kings Lane will offer cinema memorabilia from the film.

• Starting Sept. 26, QVC will offer special The Wizard of Oz programming and products, including jewelry, toys, books, DVDs and beauty products.

• Simon Malls will host Oz-themed events at more than 100 malls nationwide in September.

The Wizard of Oz will be a featured part of the 87th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Warner Bros. Consumer Products will also support the anniversary title with licensed products to more than 80 companies, including Dylan’s Candy Bar, The Noble Collection, Mattel, Madame Tussauds and more.

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