After a six month viral marketing campaign that has kept fans guessing, Cloverfield is about to be released worldwide. It all began in July 2007 when a trailer showing a huge New York explosion and the severed head of the Statue of Liberty crashing to the ground was first shown before screenings of Transformers.
Appearing to look like home-video footage, the film had no name. A US-style date, 01-18-08, appeared on the screen. It left cinema-goers intrigued.
What followed was a media blackout on details about the film, together with a viral marketing campaign not seen since horror film The Blair Witch Project was released in 1999. It sparked almost a global obsession to try and discover the film’s secrets.
It adopted the working title “Cloverfield”, giving nothing away and adding to its mystery. When it was revealed that JJ Abrams, creator of TV shows Lost and Alias, and also the Christmas 2008 release of the eagerly awaited new Star Trek film, was behind the project, the excitement built up. Fans were expecting something big – and good.
The film was so shrouded in secrecy that scripts were watermarked to prevent anyone copying them, and each day producers would swap the latest pages for those of the previous day.
A cast of unknowns were hired for the film and were not told what they were signing on to, or auditioning for.
Film fans trying to find out about the movie ended up at a series of fake websites set up containing cryptic clues to other websites. But after all the hype and build-up, has Cloverfield met expectations?
Since it’s release in the US , reviews have been mixed, but as with most films I suspect it’s all down to persoanl preference, I personally thought the Blair Witch Project was stupid, but thought Sixth Sense was very clever. I guess I’ll have to wait until the UK release on 1st Febrauary to make up my mind.