Being part of Ted Turner's vision to preserve and share classic movies with all generations on a commercial-free cable network was one of our most rewarding experiences as a design studio. Always pushing the artistic and cinematic in both on-air and traditional marketing, their commitment to creative excellence set the bar for great design. Below are some highlights of the amazing work they encouraged us to create.
If you're thinking of a promotional item that's hard hitting, this one is, literally. Designed as a B2B promotion for Turner Classic Movies' boxing-movie festival, this four-foot-tall punching bag was shipped inflated in a huge box to over 300 cable affiliates. Talk about impact. Pow!
We also created a consumer marketing campaign featuring advertising in national magazines that incorporates the same distinct visual style.
What happens when you mix a shot Humphrey Bogart, a dash of Lauren Bacall, and a pinch of the great movie poster artist Saul Bass? It's a "Recipe for Trouble." The TCM "Summer of Darkness" was an on-air, summer-long film noir festival featuring the "darker side of human nature." Despite being a popular genre, selling something this dark could be poison for ratings. Our antidote, lighten the mood by developing a playful campaign inspired by many of the movies' pulpy characters and campy one-liners.
The campaign included a consumer ad campaign in newspapers and national magazines, movie theater trivia slides, on-air bumpers, and promotional items like refrigerator magnets, tote bags, and t-shirts for live film screenings in select cities.Click to play video
In the style of old-school business promotions, every year TCM produces a printed calendar to thank vendors, partners, affiliates, and the media for their support. We've been honored to design three of these. Though all won national design awards, the pin-up calendar was by far the biggest hit. Not only did it win almost all national design industry competitions, it also won best of show in the film and TV industry's prestigious PromaxBDA Awards, and was commented on as being a coveted item by a New York Times film critic.
To celebrate Turner Classic Movies' 10th anniversary we were designed a commemorative package and booklet for three select titles from their "Essentials" series. The collectors packaging included: a specialty metallic paper slipcase, which was embossed, foil-stamped and die-cut; an inside sleeve with key movie images; three special-edition DVDs; and a book about the production and significance of each movie.
The strategy for each Turner Classic Movies film festival was to treat it like a cinematic event. From "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory" to westerns, we distilled the essence of each genre or film into a unique, exciting national campaign.
One of the most incredible events to be part of was TCM's live screening of West Side Story in Hollywood and a Q&A with many of the movies original actors for the movie's 40th anniversary. Working with Saul Bass' iconic poster art was both a challenge and inspiration. How do you take a master's art and expand upon it without mucking things up? The answer, tread lightly.
One of the special things about working with TCM was their attention to details. Even small projects had a level attention that many companies only reserve for big projects. At the same time, it's how branding should be done. Today's savvy customers will see your brand as an exploitative facade that rings hollow at its core if you company does not embrace the values your brand espouses. We can help you with that.
Today B2B marketing has risen to the level of creativity and sophistication that was once reserved for consumer marketing. An uninspired trade ad or cluttered postcard won't cut it. B2B customers expect more. We were at the beginning of this trend creating novel approaches for TCM that utilized the creativity and emotional impact usually reserved for consumer marketing, with the detailed, informative messaging of tradition B2B marketing.
Turner Classic Movies' biggest event each year is "31 Days of Oscar" - a month-long tribute to the Oscar's best movies and the month of the Academy Awards. To reach younger audiences discovering these classics, we created a gritty, street-wise campaign. Billboards in Times Square and double-page ads in popular style magazines were used in the mass media. Guerilla marketing "wild-postings" of movies posters that were tagged with the core creative of the campaign were posted in large cities across the U.S.