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Customer Reviews

2.8 out of 5 stars9
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on December 29, 2001
The main problem with this book is that it is based on a series of interviews and "War Stories", and thus there is really only 1 chapter that has any value. If a person wants to read a bunch of stories of what happened... then this is a good choice. If, however, you wish to read about marketing your movie by "opening the picture and giving it legs"... you would get more value from reading the gossip column of the National Enquirer.
The book is broken down into "case studies" as follows: Romantic Comedy, American Independent Films, Action-adventure, Documentary, Foreign Films, Low Budget & B-movies, Suspense Thriller, Black, and then a section on making trialers & promotions. The first three chapters seemed to get off to at least an interesting start as the interviewees discussed "Four Weddings and a Funeral", "Pulp Fiction" and "Golden-eye." However, it takes a nose dive thereafter.
The chapter on GoldenEye discusses the BMW tie in, and as such was informative. Also, the discussion surrounding "Four Weddings" was such that they gave insight into building a campaign.
Why does it hit a brick wall you ask? The author literally starts quoting people's comments on what should have been done... and does nothing to craft arguments or illustrations that would have improved the readers understanding. For example, he talks about Spike Lee, John Singleton, and the Hughes brothers in terms of their marketability in the Black Film section, but then provides absolutely no examples of how these filmmakers projects are marketed, nor what sorts of special approaches one might consider.
Overall, I rarely try to slam a book. Nevertheless, this book was complete garbage and hours of my life that I will never get back. If I didn't have a strict rule of always finishing a book once I start it, I would have set it down by page 50 of 273. Trust me... read the trades or use your own powers of observation, because this book will not help you beyond that advice.
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on May 11, 1999
Considering the hefty price tag, this book was a major disappointment. As an aspiring producer, I was hungry for specific technical info about the marketing of movies in today's cutthroat environment. I expected Luuk to walk me through the movie marketing process step-by-step, from beginning to end. Instead, she adopts an anecdotal approach, focusing on the marketing of one movie in each of several genres. This might have been valuable had she employed any kind of analysis and selectivity, but she seems to have merely interviewed the key players, and presented their responses in unbelievably long, unedited quotations. Had it been her avowed intention to present complete interviews with movie marketers, this would be fine, but it was not.
All in all, a disappointment. I would not recommend this book.
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on June 14, 2000
I felt that this book was very helpful in understanding what goes into marketing different types of feature films. I've read criticisms in other reviews that the book isn't specific enough in as far as critical marketing reasoning or the quantitative process in marketing these films. I agree, the book is sparse in demographics, statistics and what some would call "classic" marketing terminology. But personally, I think that's a plus. First of all, the book is obviously written with the presumption that the reader knows little to nothing about marketing or film distribution. Therefore, the ancedotal information works because it touches on the "real world" reasoning for why certain films were promoted certain ways (and it also gives expenditure breakdowns for each of the films' marketing budgets). Secondly, B-school marketing doesn't fully apply to film--as a "leisure" item, a film is not the same as a consumer product like mouthwash or a car. And regression theory is moot if a potentially influential review in the New York Times pans your arthouse film.
I think Lukk does a good job in compiling information from the marketing executives who work with films, and I found it especially useful that she broke it down in genres. Marketing a self-distributed documentary (which she talks about in the section on the film "Brother's Keeper") is not the same as opening an action-soaked James Bond film (another chapter on "GoldenEye"). Actually, I thought the sections on documentaries and independent films were the strongest in the book. It also illuminated the open secret that it is nearly impossible to sell an African-American themed film to a white audience.
"Movie Marketing" was one of the books I cited in my master's thesis on marketing and distributing African-American independent films. I was so happy to see this book when I was doing my research, in that there is almost nothing published specifically on film marketing. Although the book does have flaws and could stand to be more quantitatively sound ("Entertainment Industry Economics" by Harold Vogel is the perfect example of such a book--but unless you've taken MBA level courses, that book may totally lose you), I think that it is a good resource on a sorely underpublished subject.
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on June 8, 1999
This amateurish, cut-and-paste job is a complete waste of time and money. As an aspiring film maker, I consider it important to know about all aspects of the movie business. To that end, I read books on producing, screenwriting, distribution, etc. It's crucial that I not waste time or money and this book did both. What a disappointment! And disappointing beyond belief is that it carries the endorsement of Mark Litwak, who I used to respect, but who seems to have let his personal feelings get in the way!! As a former associate of Ralph Nader, he should know better than to endorse a product solely because of a relationship with the author! This book is a shoddy piece of hackwork - one of the worst I have EVER read!
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on June 25, 2004
This book was a waste of time! There was no in depth analysis of anything, and the book was full of unexplained examples.
This book wasnt written with any consideration, and the advertising discussed was basically researched and pasted in.
I advise to stay away from this book!
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on June 25, 2004
THe book didnt go indepth at all with what i expected to learn from the book, which is about advertising. It did not even go in depth with the examples it did have.
The book is ok, but not what you think it is.
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on May 17, 2004
Anyone who has looked for books on movie marketing knows there are only a few books out there on the subject, and while those few are thorough, nuts and bolts approaches to the subject, they often make for dry reading. Tiiu Lukk brings the subject of movie marketing to life by allowing savvy movie marketers to tell the in-depth stories of their adventures in the field, to a great extent, "in their own words." We find out about each marketer's intentions in marketing their films (often focusing on individual films), their strategy, their execution of the plan, and the success and failure of their efforts. Readable, entertaining and informative.
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on January 19, 1999
'Movie Marketing' was insightful and written close to the ground. I was happy to find a book on a subject I've tried to find insider information about for a few years. The author discussed marketing campaigns from recent movies to illumiate all points - a technique that made the reading not only more enjoyable but relevant. All stories were then put within a classic marketing context which, by comparison, either confirmed or challenged conventional movie distribution wisdom.
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on February 19, 1998
"This book not only reveals a great deal of inside information on distributor strategies and their marketing expenditures, but does so in a highly entertaining fashion. It is destined to be required reading in Hollywood executive suites as well as a primer in film and business schools for many years to come." --Mark Litwak, author of Dealmaking in the Film and Television Industry and Reel Power
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