Now Franco, who was also nominated for an Oscar that year for his performance in “127 Hours,” is giving academy members another reason to shake their heads — an irreverent awards campaign for his raunchy arthouse hit “Spring Breakers.”
In a bid to secure a supporting actor nomination for Franco’s role as Alien, the movie’s clownish rapper/drug dealer, distributor A24 is asking Oscar voters to “Consider this …” in a new ad containing an expletive.
The ad, which will appear in the Hollywood trade publications, features Franco in character, clutching two Oscar statuettes and flanked by bikini-clad actresses Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Benson. In coming months, A24 will release other ads in the cheeky tone of the movie, according to spokeswoman Nicolette Aizenberg.
“We all believe strongly in the performance,” Aizenberg said. “He created something that is part of the Zeitgeist.”
But Avatar represented a breakthrough for the technology and advertisers took the newfound awareness of 3D and ran with it, not just for movie promotions, but for any campaign that could get approval by a brand’s decision-makers.
Then much of that activity ceased, perhaps in response to the ongoing economic downturn, or perhaps in response to copycat 3D movies that followed Avatar. They gave the technology a bad name by cut-and-pasting a few 3D elements atop of a movie already in production and then sticking movie-goers with a bigger ticket price.
Maybe the next series of Avatar movies will give 3D the push it needs into mainstream ad technology. Cameron has said he is working on improving the technology for the next film. Also, when the first Avatar was released, smartphones were still in minority of cell phone-carrying users and consumer incomes were not disposable enough to buy the very expensive 3D television sets that were starting to come to market. Those trends may well be in full sail by the time the next Avatar movies come out.