Monday, April 5, 2010

TRON LEGACY Fake Press Conference A Bust

I'm just as excited to see Tron Legacy as anybody out there and I do mean anybody. When I was a kid and saw Tron it just about killed me, I literally fell in love with it instantly. I would run around my parent's apartment at a weird angle pretending I was holding onto a bar and riding a light cycle. I made my folks take me to see it, neighbors, friends parents, anybody I could trick into going with me.

I had the toys (which I wish I still fucking had) and my dad even made me a fake Tron costume. I was obsessed and have remain obsessed ever since. When Tron Legacy was announced I had my reservations but looking at the trailers and reading the treatment I became amped to see it. I even played the godforsaken video game quiz to win the Encom badge and almost paid $35 for a Flynn Lives t-shirt.

Oh yeah, I'm all in for this.

Now though, it's getting to be a little much. The whole Tron "Viral" marketing thing has taken a bad step and the fake press conference that took place in San Francisco on Friday night is glaring proof of this. First of all there is nothing lamer then when actors are forced to play their parts outside of the film for some marketing campaign. Watching Bruce Boxleitner parade around as Alan Bradley from the original film is just uncomfortable and watching others interview him like IGN as if he's really Bradley never comes across as anything but a bad SNL skit.

Apparently this big viral press conference hit a bad snag and become one of the most anticlimactic things ever. The idea behind it was that Alan Bradley would be announcing that Encom would be celebrating the life of Kevin Flynn (Jeff Bridges) by re-releasing his classic video game Spaceparanoids with 15 levels of new game play Flynn himself had finished before vanishing twenty years earlier.

They could have finished this up with a sudden interference on the screen behind Boxleitner that then gave a cryptic message from Flynn about being alive and topping it off with a new trailer or at least new footage. Instead this bunch of supposed "Flynn Lives" renegades took over the stage and all these Flynn Lives signs that were handed out to the audience came up and then there was this stupid helicopter stunt that made no sense at all. The entire thing was a bust and it was completely the fault of the people who planned it.

First off it was freezing cold that night and the audience had to wait around in the cold for an hour. Apparently the audience had all been given Flynn Lives t-shirts which they were supposed to expose when the group rushed the stage. The problem was it was so goddamn cold nobody took of their jackets, just held up signs. The next problem was the wind held up the big copter event so Bruce Boxleitner had to stand around improving until he was walked off stage.

Finally the helicopter came, a guy jumped out, landed and drove off in a car. This was supposed to be Sam Flynn, the son of Kevin Flynn but what it had to do with ANYTHING seemed lost on the crowd. Once it was over many hung around fully expecting there to be more going on. NOPE, nothing, just a badly executed and unnecessary marketing gimmick.

With Tron Legacy being a full nine months away (it hits in December) I'm left to wonder how many more of these stupid "viral" marketing ploys will we be forced to endure and will they eventually turn people against the movie. I beg the Tron folks to rethink their game plan, which of course they won't. Why? Because they can edit this shitty press conference into something great. Want proof, check it out:


See, that makes it look like the whole thing was wicked cool. I'm still amped on the movie but I'm getting fucking tired of these lame marketing jams.

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